Fixed star:  PRINCEPS
Constellation:  Delta (δ) Bootes
Longitude 1900:  01SCO45 Longitude 2000:  03SCO09
Declination 1900:  +33.41′ Declination 2000:  +33.19′
Right ascension:  15h 15m Latitude:  +48.57′
Spectral class:  G4 Magnitude:  3.5

The history of the star: Princeps

from p.104 of Star Names, Richard Hinckley Allen, 1889.
[A scanned copy can be viewed on this webpage

PrincepsDelta (δ) Bootes, Princeps, is a pale yellow star in the spear-shaft of the Herdsman or Ploughman.

Princeps means “Prince”, or “prime” in Latin. Wikipedia explains that the word Princeps, usually translated as “First Citizen”, was an official title for Roman Emperors.

This star does not appear to be named [says Allen in 1889, but Robson in 1923 used the name Princeps for this star] but in China was part of Tseih Kung, the Seven Princes; the other components being mu (μ), nu (ν), phi (φ), psi (ψ), and psi (ψ), or , in the right hand and on the Club, 20° northeast of Arcturus.

This star, delta (δ Princeps), beta (β Nekkar), with gamma (γ Seginus), and mu (μ Alkalurops), constituted the trapezium Al Dhi’bah, the Female Wolves, or, perhaps, Hyaenas, an early asterism of the Arabs before they adopted the Greek constellation; these animals, with others similar shown by stars in Draco and near it, lying in wait for the occupants of the ancient Fold around the pole (Polaris).

Star Names, Their Lore and Meaning, Richard Hinckley Allen, 1889].










The astrological influences of the constellation Bootes

Bootes is identified with Icarius, who was killed by some shepherds he had made drunk with a flagon of wine given him by Bacchus/Dionysus. In consideration of the grief of his daughter Erigone and their hound Maera, Jupiter placed her father in heaven as Bootes, together with herself as Virgo and the hound became one of the Dogs; some say Canis Minor, others say Canis Major

According to Ptolemy the influence of the constellation is like that of Mercury and Saturn, though the star Arcturus is like Mars and Jupiter. It is said to give prosperity from work, strong desires, a tendency to excess, a fondness for rural pursuits, together with some liking for occultism. The Kabalists associate it with the Hebrew letter Teth and the 9th Tarot Trump, “The Hermit”. [Robson, p.32.]

The astrological influences of the constellation Bootes given by Manilius:

“True is the name men have given him (the Bearwarden), threatening-like he presses forward as one does over a team of bullocks. To those born under Arctophylax – Arcturus, fortune herself makes bold to entrust her treasures, so that the wealth of monarchs and temple finances will be in their keeping [translator’s note: custodianship is a suitable endowment for the Bearward]; they will be kings under kings and ministers of state [politicians], and be charged with the guardianship of the people or, as the stewards of grand houses, they will confine their business to the care of another’s home.” [Translator’s note: strictly speaking Arcturus is a star, but the name is used by ancient astrologers for the whole constellation of Bootes and for the star alone, it is often difficult to distinguish which of these the authors are referring to]. [Manilius, Astronomica, 1st century AD, book 5, p.329.]

The astrological influences of the star Princeps

Of the nature of Mercury and Saturn. It gives a keen studious and profound mind with the ability for research. [Robson, p.190.]

If Rising: Good fortune but troubles, discontent and fear occasioned by own temerity rather than circumstances. [Robson, p.190.]


Fixed Stars and Constellations in Astrology, Vivian E. Robson, 1923].