Equal House System

The Equal House house is often confused with the whole House system, both are astrology’s oldest division of the zodiac The Ecliptic, the imaginary sphere  that encircles the celestial spere, and some astrologers call it the Ecliptic system.  The difference between the Whole and Equal systems is the equal house starts all houses with the ascendant’s degree; the whole resets this to zero.

Download Havelock-Ellis here.

Dr. Ellis was an English essayist and physician who studied human sexual behavior.  He challenged 19th-century Victorian taboos against public discussion of the subject very similar to the much later American Masters & Johnson studies. 

Many of his books, including his best, The Task of Social Hygiene, can be found here on Gutenberg.org; we have used some of his case studies for this project.

Major Notes


  1. All the houses are equally spaced —  each house is exactly thirty degrees wide, so it very easy to  construct manually.
  2. All the houses start with the degree of the ascendant, so any degree before is in the previous house.
  3. There are not any  intercepted houses, as each sign gets its own house, i.e. the map has twelve equal parts.
  4. As the ascendant is the start of each house, the tenth house cusp does not coincide with the Midheaven.
  5. The late Lois Rodden loved the Equal house.

Equal House

I have drawn an arrow to show the tenth house which is now Scorpio and semi-sextile his Venus in the eleventh.  This aspect ties his public health studies closely to his sex studies, also his most well-known work.  

The twelfth house shows the luminaries in a close conjunction, highlighting how he worked on a taboo topic like sex with great fascination (opposition to Saturn).



In the Placidus format, Venus is in the tenth house of dreams and aspirations and the twelfth house the same.  The interceptions in the first and seventh house hint that his motives may not be as pure and scientific as he stated, adding some titillation to the observations.

The Equal fourth house planets of Jupiter and Uranus are now in the third house emphasizing his writings on previously socially unaccepted topics.

The Whole House System

Despite Havelock Ellis’s ascendant being late, the whole house differs greatly from the Equal because it rests it to be the prior zero, thus all the houses are off by one.