Famous (and not-so-famous) Pentagrams of Washington D.C. - Part 3
Mundane Astrology
The Knepf's Snake-eye
by Ed Kohout

Famous (and not-so-famous) Pentagrams
of Wshington D.C.
Part 3

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Masonic geometry of Washington D.C.

The Capitol Building

The Constitution was structured in a way that creates check and balances between the three branches of government so that no one branch will overpower another.  We can see this concept symbolized in the positioning of the White House and the Capitol building in the city's layout, with neither building at a central location, but both connected to the center via geometrical alignment.  What stands out above in yellow is the 39° angle radiating outward from the Capitol overlaid with a 90° angle, replicating Masonry's basic square and compass.

As for the ediface itself, many decades passed before final design motifs were agreed upon and the dome completed, resulting in the structure we see today.  The building started in earnest when cornerstone of the Capitol was laid in a Masonic ceremony by George Washington on September 18, 1793.  This date is relevant to the new Federal City's geodescy for two reasons, the first being a mundane square -- the day that the fixed star Antares rises in mundo while the Sun culminates:

 Figure 3-1

The astrology wheel for this culmination is:

 Figure 3-2

The second reason has to do with the RA Geodetic chart of Washington D.C., based upon London's meridian value as 0°00' Aries and 0h00m RA.  Washington's geodetic angles are 11°57' Capricorn MC and 21°26' Aries ASC, and as we can see, the meridian axis is aligned to Sirius and Wega, while the descendant hosts Spica:

 Figure 3-3

And, taking the original chart and relocating it to Giza, we find similar angles, and a similar mundo T-square of Sirius, Vega, and Spica:

 Figure 3-4

A biwheel shows this relationship better:

 Figure 3-5

It follows that the White House cornerstone chart would host Sol setting conjunct Spica on a Geodetic wheel:

 Figure 3-6

Back to the Capitol, the biqintile from Jupiter to this geodetic ASC (and also the semi-quintile to the DSC/Spica) also proves noteworthy in regards to another chart, that of the United Nations, which started officially on October 24, 1945, at 4:45 PM.  This time on this date places Spica setting exactly in mundo over Washington D.C., and thus the angles of the UN are practically the same as the geodetic angles of Washington D.C.  This is best seen on a biwheel:

 Figure 3-7

Returning to the original radix, we see that the Sun and Moon are both in aspect to the ASC: the Sun in quintile, and the Moon in square.  The Sun/ASC angle produces a similar aspect from Moon to the POF.  Are there any allusions to pentagram numbers in the archiceture of the Capitol building? The Architect of the Capitol website gives some basic information:

"Its height above the base line on the east front to the top of the Statue of Freedom is 288 feet; from the basement floor to the top of the dome is an ascent of 365 steps."

288 is indeed 72 x 4, and indeed an allusion to the fifth harmonic if feet = degrees.  How can we be sure?  The ascent from bottom to top is the number of days in a year, or the time it takes for the Sun to travel 360°.

"The building contains approximately 540 rooms and has 658 windows (108 in the dome alone) and approximately 850 doorways."

The dome, which was intended to be the center of the city's street grid that spreads out in all directions like a sunburst,X contains 108 windows! This choice may seem obscure at first, but domes are intended to be symbolic of the spiritual space -- the heavens -- over the place where humans do their important work. Thus, a dome represents half of a sphere, and the arc from horizon to horizon totals 180°, from which we can subtract 72 to arrive at 108. The windows are in three tiers of the decile/decad angle 36°, with each window as a portal to 10° of the horizon.

The Dome itself underwent design changes for many years, until a final design and funding was approved by Congress, and subsequently signed by President Pierce on March 3, 1855, which can be written as 3/3/55.  March 3, another "33", is also the 62nd day of the year, and thus the 72nd day of Winter, as we add the remaining days of December (10) to January (31) to February (28) and the three days in March --

10 + 31 + 28 + 3 = 72.

The astute historian knows that the Constitution went into effect on March 4, 1789 -- on the 63rd day of the year -- perhaps an allusion to the proportion of a circumference that equals one "pole" length of 198. In fact, if we add the two -- {63 + 198 = 261} -- and locate which day of the year is the 261st, we find it is September 18 -- the very date of the Capitol's cornerstone laying ceremony!

From this dome, the most important street in Washington D.C., Pennsylvania Avenue, leads nothwest to the White House at the peculiar but Masonic angle of 19.5°:

 Figure 3-8

Ovason claims in Secret Architecture that L'enfant and Ellicott, the two chief civil engineers of the city, "secretly" chose the sunset of August 10th to measure the angle of Pennsylvania Avenue.  "We see then, that the likely key date for understanding the stellar mystery of Washington, D.C., is August 10."X (Italics are his!)  He makes this assumption based upon his own visual observations of a sunset, as well as using astronomical software that would enable him to see which constellations would become visible during the twilight over that same area.

However, a few pages later, he admits that this date may be August 12th, as he had witnessed the setting sun being eclipsed quite perfectly by the 315-foot bell tower of the Old Post Office discussed in Part 1 -- from atop the Capitol dome.  Also discussed in Part 1 was the fact that April 29 is 99 days {33 × 3} after Inauguration Day; This date is also the solar "antiscion" of August 12, meaning that the sun is at the same declination on both days, and therefore sets at the same azimuth on both days.  At Washington's latitude, this translates into just over 20° Leo and just under 10° Taurus, and a separation of about 100° of arc and 105 days.  Interestingly, just as we found that there were 66 {33 × 2} days from April 29 to July 4, we also find that there are 39 {19.5 × 2} days from July 4 to August 12!  Yet another play on the two sacred Masonic numbers.

Unfortunately, Ovason never settles the question of August 10 or 12 in his book, but instead points out another astronomical goodie having to do with the triangular alignment of Regulus, Spica, and Arcturus, which are all alpha stars of their respective constellations of Leo, Virgo, and Boötes.  This is surely a real phenomenon, and we will return to it in a moment, but it is not the astrological "secret" that explains the angle of 19.5°.

Instead, we will see that Ovason was putting the proverbial cart before the horse -- the angle of 19.5° was, and still is, an allusion to sacred geometry of the circumscribed tetrahedron, which is defined by this equation:

SINE 19.471220634490691369245999 = .3333333333333¯

"33" being the quintessential Masonic number-symbol.  This sunset on the 12th of August, 1791, does approximate the ideal of "19.5°" with an azimuth of 289°39' (289°39' - 270° = 19°39'), giving L'enfant a precise measurement to work with:

 Figure 3-9

This is only half of the story, though, as the astrological wheel for this sunset shows that August 12 in the precessional epoch of 1791 featured Antares's longitude on the MC and Deneb Algedi/Sadalsuud's longitudes on the ASC, which effectively attaches the "Sirian pentacle" to the local angles!  And, Mars is conjunct Sirius!

Recall in the Apollo essay that there are two times every sidereal day that the local angles (ascendant and midheaven) attain an arc of 72°:

3°37' Sagittarius 15°37' Aquarius
0°54' Libra 12°54' Sagittarius

When I did this chart, I could barely believe it, but yet here it is, the astrometrical chart of L'Enfant for the streets of Washington D.C.:

 Figure 3-10

And, with the complete pentagram inscribed:

 Figure 3-11

Further evidence that Antares was central to the Capitol's astrometry can be found on the morning of November 17, 1800, when the second session of the sixth congress finally convened at Washington for the first time.  On that date, the Moon occulted Antares starting at 8:56 AM LMT and lasting until 10:00 AM:

 Figure 3-12

At the center of this occultation, Spica culminated:

 Figure 3-13

A biwheel of L'Enfant's sunset of 1791 and the first session of the Capitol:

 Figure 3-14

A most empowering connection between the two charts that bolsters legislative authority is the Sun/Saturn [SO/SA] of the first session being in aspect to the Jupiter/Saturn [JU/SA] of the L'Enfant's sunset from Jenkins Hill.

Having mentioned the United Nations earlier, we should return to the cornerstone laying ceremony of October 24, 1949, at New York (see also).  Not only was this the fourth anniversary of the original signing ceremony (and a date that was to become "United Nations Day"), it was also a day that the Moon again occulted Antares, and did so with Mars co-culminating with Regulus:

 Figure 3-15

The Statue of Freedom

Aside from the central "19.5" angle that defines Pennsylvania Avenue, another symbol of this most important geometrical number, the The Statue of Freedom can be found atop the Capitol dome, completing the final 19 feet and 6 inches of the Capitol's 288-foot height.1  

This wonderful statue was hoisted atop the Capitol during the darkest days of the Civil War, at noon on December 2, 1863 (33 days after Halloween, and 33 days prior to January 3, the date Congress is sworn in!), a day that again saw some remarkable planetary alignments to Spica, Antares, and Regulus.  Venus co-rose with Spica that morning, and visible above that was a conjunction of the Moon with Regulus.  Four hours later, the Sun and Mercury would co-rise with Antares.  Venus is closely associated with Spica astrologically, according to Ptolemy, and the two bodies possess similar color.  A skymap for this cosmical rising reveals the rare alignment:

 Figure 3-16

The astrological wheel for this rising boasts further 5th-harmonic geometry:

 Figure 3-17

Just before noon, when the ecliptical value of Antares culminated and the ecliptical values of Deneb Algedi and Sadalsuud ascended, again bringing the "Sirius pentacle" to Washington's angles, we again find that the Sun in quintile to the ascendant and Luna in quintile to the POF.  Uranus conjunct Orion is also in bi-quintile to Jupiter, which is near to the POF:

 Figure 3-18

 Figure 3-19  Closeup of the head of the Statue of Freedom. This picture was taken when the statue was being refurbished and cleaned in 1993.  Courtesy: Architect of the Capitol.

Unsurprisingly, this obsession with pentacles is cast into the Statue of Freedom's headress.  Twelve of these circle the head in reference to the zodiac.  This does not, however, explain exactly how 19.5 symbolizes freedom.  Yes, we are a "free country," and freedom from tyrrany was the mantra of the Revolutionaries, but is there another freedom that five-pointed stars and 33's can grant humans? The answer to this is partly spiritual, and partly interdimensional. Alchemical cosmology considered the four elements -- fire, earth, air, and water -- to be whole of what the physical world was composed of, and these four basics were synonymous with the four cardinal directions.  There was a fifth element, but it existed only beyond the sphere of the stars.  So called "aether" was the element that existed beyond the earthly realms, and into "heaven" where spirit dwells while not trapped in the 3-dimensional world.  The "19.5" is a similar concept, as via tetrahedronal "hyperdimensional physics," energy can flow between different dimensional orders at certain latitudes on rotating spheres.

To divert here into a discussion of these concepts would be counterproductive, so instead a quick look is in order of the quadriwheel of all four charts:

 Figure 3-20

The emphasis on Virgo should be apparent:

  • Seat of Government: Moon/Mars/ASC;
  • D.C. Boundary Stone: Moon/Jupiter/ASC -- North Node/Spica;
  • White House Cornerstone: Moon/North Node -- Sun/Spica;
  • Capitol Cornerstone: Sun/MC.

That certain celestial bodies show up over and over again in the important moments of the Capitol's history is no accident, and evidence of an intelligent and deliberate scheme to plan central events and structures around special astrometrical moments.  The utility of doing things in this manner is based in the time-honored tradition of doing earthly deeds in harmony with the ways of the heavens, and thus paying tribute to the Creator's grand design.

The astrology of the Pentagon is discussed in Part 4.

For more information, I recommend:

  • Kennon, Donald R., The United States Capitol: Designing and Decorating a National Icon, Ohio University Press, 2000;

  • Bowling, Kenneth R., The Creation of Washington D.C.: The Idea and Location of the American Capitol, George Mason University Press, Fairfax, VA, 1991;

  • Froncek, Thomas, and The Junior League of Washington, The City of Washington; An Illustrated History, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1977.

  • 1 The best evidence of how strict was the specification of the Capitol's 288-foot height comes with the story of this statue.  Originally it was designed to be 16' 9" tall, but when the sculptor changed this to 19' 6", the dome had to be decreased in size by 2' 9" to accomodte the statue rather than simply changing the total height of the building!

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