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Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....

Article

3rd century, male.

Active at the beginning of the 3rd century BC.

Born in Cnidus.

Sculptor, decorative designer, architect.

Ancient Greek.

Sostratus is famous as the architect of the pharos (lighthouse) of Alexandria. This grandiose work was celebrated for its daring construction, the richness of its sculptural decoration and the ingeniousness of the mechanism that caused the action of the wind to make the gigantic Tritons' trumpets carved at the feet of Ptolemy II sound so as to warn navigators lost in the mist....