The Great Lisbon Earthquake:
November 1, 1755 was to be a sunny autumn day in the , one of the most important and richest seaports of Europe. The locals were profoundly religious, and the city was preparing to celebrate the obligatory holy day of the Feast of All Saints.
At 9:30 in the morning the inhabitants were alarmed by weak tremors. Christian Staqueler, consul of the German city of Hamburg, remembers in a later report: “First we heard a rumble, like the noise of a carriage, it became louder and louder, until it was as loud as the loudest noise of a gun, immediately after that we felt the first tremble.“
At 9:40 all the bells of the city rang simultaneously and only seconds later the first buildings collapsed. Three major shakes followed in the next 10 minutes, the collapse of the churches killed most people, full of believers attending the second mass of the day.
People fled in the seaport’s direction where the large squares of the royal palace promised shelter from the debris of the collapsing buildings. It was there that they witnessed a strange phenomenon: The sea had vanished and the riverbed of the Rio Tejo,, was dry. That is striking, because it flows from the north and into the Atlantic. It is a shallow estuary but the longest river, about 645 miles, on the Iberian peninsula. It was named by the Romans centuries ago, and was a major reason for the establishment of Lisbon as a Roman port town.
At 10:10 a 12 meter high tsunami-wave reached the city and destroyed the entire harbor, thousands of people standing along the shores were swept away and killed. After the earthquake and following the tsunami, a fire broke out raging for five days destroying whatever was dry enough to burn.
The Map of the strike
It’s a wild chart. First there is Saturn in Capricorn opposite Mars in Cancer, the latter ill-dignified because Mars is exalted in Capricorn a place that appreciates its martial efforts, unlike homey Cancer that does not want any strike. So the Lord of Capricorn, Saturn, is opposite its exalted ruler, Mars, making for an unstable environment. The two get a T-square from over-active Jupiter in the Tenth House that is square it’s exaltation in Cancer. The planets all seem to be in the wrong places and unhappy about it.
Neptune, the earthquake planet, is in Leo in the Eighth House receiving too much exuberance from Jupiter in the Tenth. Venus and the Sun are literally fighting for space in Scorpio in the Eleventh, who ruler the soon to be discovered Uranus, is in the hiding in the Third House just waiting to pounce into action. Everything was ready for the time to be ripe, and when the Ascendant became fire-brand 09 Sagittarius*, Jupiter went over the top and started a wild bumper ride hitting and bouncing against its various neighbors crying havoc and letting slip the dogs of war.
In the end, countless were dead. Estimate ranged from 10,000 to 100,000 and even cynical Voltaire shed a tear.
1. Adriano Carelli in his text, The 360 Degrees of the Zodiac, says that 09 Sagittarius, the ascendant for this chart, is the degree of fire and devastation. It may “be literal” or it may be “figurative” but it is a degree that “portends work connect with fire or an accident that brings about the same.”