4 Cardinal Zodiac Signs: Power & Meaning in Astrology

Updated July 28, 2020
Four seasons

The Cardinal signs, Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn, are the astrological signs that begin the four seasons. The meaning and power of the Cardinal signs lies in their ability to act and set life in motion.

What Is the Meaning of the Cardinal Signs?

Your Dictionary says the word "cardinal" is from the Latin cardinālis which means "pertaining to a hinge, hence applied to that on which something turns or depends." The four Cardinal signs are pivotal to life. They are the energetic and enthusiastic starters of the zodiac. The cardinal signs act to move life forward. A Cardinal sign's power is in:

  • Initiating and taking action
  • Leading and directly tackling obstacles
  • Managing crises

Downside of the Cardinal Signs

The downside of a Cardinal sign is that they have a tendency to be impulsive, restless, careless, and have problems with follow through.

The Power of Each Cardinal Sign

The Cardinal signs have a lot in common. However, their different elements, Earth, Air, Fire, and Water, bequeaths each with a different source of power.

Aries: The Power of Cardinal Fire

Aries, the first sign of the zodiac, is the Cardinal Fire sign of the zodiac. Aries is the creative force that acts as the catalyst to spark new beginnings. Its power lies in passion and commitment to "the self."

Zodiac sign, Aries

Cancer: The Power of Cardinal Water

Cancer, the fourth sign of the zodiac, is the Cardinal Water sign of the zodiac. Cancer uses gut feelings, kindness, nurturing, and caring to initiate action. Cancer's power is in its emotional force.

Zodiac sign, Cancer

Libra: The Power of Cardinal Air

Libra, the seventh sign of the zodiac, is the Cardinal Air sign of the zodiac. Libra acts to begin relationships and interactions with others. Libra's power is in intellect, argument, negotiation, and its drive to be the balancing force.

Zodiac sign, Libra

Capricorn: The Power of Cardinal Earth

Capricorn, the tenth sign of the zodiac, is the Cardinal Earth sign of the zodiac. Capricorn acts with strong practical skills, a high level of authority, wisdom, and maturity. Its power lies its drive to change the world in tangible ways.

Zodiac sign, Capricorn

Cardinal Signs Compatibility

Modality is only one small part of astrological compatibility, but understanding your partner's innate mode of behavior can give insight into why there are difficulties in a relationship and how the problems can be worked out.

Cardinal and Mutable

Cardinal signs are leaders who want to take charge of a relationship. The Mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, and Pisces) are adaptable to change and can easily allow Cardinal to take the lead and move things forward. This combo is likely to be the easiest.

Cardinal and Cardinal

Two Cardinal signs can have a challenging relationship. However, these signs love both challenge and change. Working together, they can initiate growth in each other. This combo is likely to be the most progressive and exciting.

Cardinal and Fixed

Cardinal signs can change on a dime while the Fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius), resist change and won't be pushed into change. This combo is probably the most difficult.

The Cardinal Houses

In astrology, the Cardinal houses are the first, fourth, seventh, and tenth astrological houses. The Cardinal signs are the natural rulers of these houses.

  • Aries rules the first house of self
  • Cancer rules the fourth house of home, family, and heritage
  • Libra rules the seventh house of partnerships
  • Capricorn rules the tenth house of career and social status

These are the houses in which the four angles of a chart (Ascendant, Midheaven, Imum Coeli and Descendant) are found. They are considered to have the most significant impact on an individual.

The Aries Point

The Equinoxes and Solstices mark the first day of each season. These days correspond with the first day/degree (0 to 1°) of Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn. The first day of a Cardinal sign is a turning point. In astrology, the technical term for the first degree of any Cardinal sign is the "Aries Point." These four points are indicative of a spectacular out rushing of energies. If you have a planet on these points, there is frequently some sort of recognition by the world at large. You can calculate your birth chart at AstroSeek to find out if you have a placement on one of the four Aries points.

Astrology Is Complex

A birth chart is complex and contains all three modalities. So, even if you have a Cardinal Sun sign, when you consider your entire birth chart, the mode of your Sun sign might or might not be your dominating mode of behavior. The best way to know which of the three modalities colors all your behavior is to find out your true astrology sign.

4 Cardinal Zodiac Signs: Power & Meaning in Astrology