August 23 – September 15
(21°51′ Virgo to 8°00′ Virgo)
Pre-shadow period occurs August 3 – 23
Mercury turns Retrograde on August 23 at 1:00 p.m.* (21°51′ Virgo)
Stations direct on September 15 at 1:21 p.m. (8°00′ Virgo)
Post-shadow occurs from September 15 – 29
December 12, 2023 – January 1, 2024
(8°29′ Capricorn to 22°10′ Sagittarius)
Pre-shadow period occurs November 25 – December 12
Mercury turns Retrograde on Dec. 12 at 11:09 p.m.* (8°29′ Capricorn)
Stations Direct on January 1 at 7:08 p.m. (22°10′ Sagittarius)
Post-shadow occurs from January 1 – 20, 2024
In general, Mercury is the planet that astrologically represents travel, communication, and our thought processes. Known as the Messenger of the Gods, Mercury’s role is to speedily deliver clear and precise information. Retrograding 3–4 times a year, when the planetary trickster strikes, many of our daily activities go haywire.
Mercury rules electronics and is often blamed for all types of technical mishaps with cell phones, electric devices, and computers — warranting an important time to back up your computer files. In general terms, machines of all kinds tend to act strangely and take on a Murphy’s Law theme.
Remain flexible and prepare for delays and miscommunications of all kinds. It is best to avoid signing any contractual agreements as matters begun during Mercury retrograde periods tend to take unexpected twists and turns in the future. During Mercury retrograde periods we often find ourselves revisiting past projects or situations that, once again, need our attention. It is also a time period, however, when we often hear from, or feel compelled to reach out to old friends or lovers whom we haven’t spoken to in some time.
Although Mercury retrograde periods can seem frustrating, they often provide opportunities to review or finish up old projects, contact old friends, or clean out the closet and garage. Mercury retrograde periods are an opportune time for introspection and deep thought, especially a couple of days directly before and after the exact retrograde day occurs.
Note: Planets do not actually move backwards (retrograde). A retrograding planet is the result of an optical illusion per its orbital relative speed from our point of view on Earth.
*Pacific time used throughout
Previous 2023 Retrograde Periods
December 29 – January 18, 2023
(24°21′ Capricorn to 8°08′ Capricorn)
Pre-shadow period occurs December 12 – December 28
Mercury Retrogrades on December 29 at 1:32 a.m. (24°21′ Capricorn)
Mercury Stations Direct on January 18, 2023, at 5:12 a.m. (8°08′ Capricorn)
Post-shadow occurs from January 18 – February 6
April 21 – May 14
(15°37′ Taurus to 5°50′ Taurus)
Pre-shadow period occurs April 7 – 21
Mercury turns retrograde on April 21 at 1:35 p.m.* (15°37′ Taurus)
Stations direct on May 14 at 8:17 p.m. (5°50′ Taurus)
Post-shadow occurs from May 14 – 31
© 2023 by Linda Kaye
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