Zodiac Sign

Horoscope Traits of the Crab Star Sign

The Cancer Characteristics in Astrology

Cancer, the Crab, is the fourth sign of the Zodiac. The Cancer horoscope sign belongs to the element water and has the cardinal quality. That makes it a Zodiac sign of emotions, the strong and protective ones. So, Cancer is said to be the motherly character of the horoscope, the benefactor, taking care of everyone else.

Cancer, the Crab, is the fourth sign of the Zodiac. The sun enters Cancer on or around June 21, at the summer solstice. Cancer belongs to the element water, its quality is cardinal and its charge is negative. Its Ruler is the moon, and Venus exalts in it. Cancer’s motto is: “I feel.”

In the horoscope chart, Cancer brings a caring, affectionate and protecting character to planets or Houses therein.

Cancer the Benefactor

Maternal instincts are typical of the Cancer horoscope character, although certainly people born in other Zodiac signs also can have them. The ruler of the Cancer Zodiac sign is the moon, which is also all about feelings and longings, the needs of the soul. In the horoscope, the moon also represents the mother.

Two generations of mothers, Anne and Mary, and the Jesus child. Painting by Leonardo da Vinci, as it looked before a controversial restoration of it in 2011. He worked on it for several years, but it remained in his workshop, as if unfinished, until his death in 1519. Click the image to see the same painting after the restoration.

It must be understood that the Cancer Zodiac sign benefactor of the horoscope is a kind of ruler, insisting on what’s best for everybody else. That’s why Cancer is a cardinal sign. The protector demands obedience, claiming that it’s the best for everybody. Maybe so.

To the Cancer horoscope sign, the important aspect of living is how we feel, how our sentiments are fed and rewarded. Nothing else compares to it, whatever other people might think. So, Cancer in the horoscope is out to make everyone feel good, even when they don’t know they need it. It’s tempting for others to just accept what Cancer dictates, because it certainly leads to well-being. But they might also find that other things are important, as well. Cancer does, too, if noticing that they need it to feel good.

Those with the Cancer Zodiac sign are born with the sun in it, between June 21 and July 22. For much more about the Cancer influence in the horoscope, see the links in the menu to the left and below.

Here’s more about the Cancer archetype, the allegorical mother:

Cancer Archetype


English name: The Crab

Element / Quality: Water / Cardinal

Ruler / Exalting: Moon / Venus

Keyword: Emotion

Motto: “I feel.”

Character: Benefactor

Sun sign dates: June 21 – July 22

Archetype: The Mother

Cancer Horoscope Traits

The Cancer star sign, starting at Midsummer, is the kind benefactor, bringing warmth and fruition. In the horoscope, Cancer is regarded as the maternal character of the Zodiac, its traits being protective with the power of a ruler, but indeed a benevolent one. The Cancer horoscope sign is all about feelings and wants everyone to feel good.

Cancer Star Sign

Those who have Cancer as their star sign are born when the sun was in Cancer, normally June 21 – July 22 (it differs slightly from year to year, because of the leap years). Therefore, it is also – more accurately – called the sun sign.

The sun in your horoscope is your natural self – what you are when you relax, when other planets in your horoscope are not active. It’s your basic drive, a character more or less evident in all you do and all you are.

The sun is the most important point in your horoscope chart, but it’s not the only thing describing your personality. You need to look at all the components of your birth chart, to get a complete astrological description of yourself. But here you find what can be said in general about the Cancer Horoscope Traits, based only on the sun’s position.

Feeling Good with Cancer

If your star sign is Cancer, you are an emotional being, engaging yourself in caring about others. Cancer is the motherly sign. That’s far from a submissive character. Notice that the Cancer sign’s quality is cardinal, leading. The Cancer character is caring in a protective way, a tendency to control, although with good intentions.

Cancer’s perspective is one of feelings, more than of thoughts, things, or action. Cancer pays attention to moods, and strives to make everybody feel good. Any Cancer would be a good reader of how people really feel inside, no matter what they say or what face they show.

To Cancer, life is primarily emotional – anything else is secondary or completely irrelevant. So, Cancer wants everybody to feel good and believes to know how, whatever the others have to say about it. This protective spirit may be gentle and compassionate, but make no mistake about it: Cancer demands to be in control, convinced that it’s the best for everyone.

Cancer, illustration from a 1482 edition of a book by Hyginus.

Three Different Cancer

A Zodiac sign doesn’t give exactly the same influence all through its 30°. Its first third has something of a cardinal quality, whatever the quality of the sign as a whole is, its second third is slightly more fixed in quality, and the last third is more mutable.

If you were born at the end of June (from Midsummer and on), the sun is in the beginning of Cancer. Then you’re very controlling and dominating, especially in an emotional way. You allow yourself to interfere, in order to make others feel better. Since this is the cardinal part of the sign and Cancer is a cardinal sign, people with the sun here are the most typical Cancers, showing the traits of the sign clearly.

If you were born in the beginning of July, the sun is in the middle of Cancer. That means you’re very protective, trying to maintain a stillness so that others don’t get upset or worried. You strive for everyone to feel good, forever.

If you were born in the middle of July, the sun is at the end of Cancer. That makes you anxious to avoid situations that might worry others or make them feel unpleasant. You are tireless in your efforts to make everybody feel good, and it takes its toll on you. Also, in your efforts to please you may unwillingly irritate the people around you.

The star constellation Cancer, represented by a crab. Illustration from Firmamentum, by Hevelius 1690.

Cancer’s Father in the Horoscope

The sun in the horoscope also represents your father (the mother is represented by the moon). That means your Cancer traits reveal something about the characteristics of your relationship with your father.

If you have the sun in Cancer, your relation to your father is one of deep affection, where both of you feel very committed to each other. You are also both quite protective, sometimes in ways that lead to frustration, because you both feel that you know what’s best for the other. Still, your bonds are unlikely to ever break, and you cherish each other’s company, without the need to either speak or do anything in particular.

Cancer Compatibility

The Cancer horoscope sign, the benevolent, belongs to the element water, which is that of emotions. So do Scorpio and Pisces, but that doesn’t necessarily mean Cancer is particularly compatible with them – they need to feel mutual attraction, which is something elusive at times. Nor for that matter is the Cancer Zodiac sign always incompatible with, say, the horoscope fire signs Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius, although they are quite different.

All the astrological traits of each Zodiac sign have to be considered when examining their compatibility. Click the header to read more about what it means to the Cancer horoscope sign.

Zodiac Sign Calculator

If you’re unsure of your Zodiac sign, or if you want to know on what degree (between 0° and 30°) of the sign the sun was at your birth, please visit the Zodiac sign calculator. It’s very easy to use, and then you’ll know for sure. Click the header to get there.

Cancer Sexuality

The horoscope also reveals what your sex life is like. That’s not only done by your Zodiac sun sign, but it does give some general indications. Click the header to see what astrology has to say about the sexuality and sexual preferences of those who are born in the Cancer Zodiac sign.

Zodiac Sign Meanings

Your horoscope Zodiac sign is where the sun was at the time of your birth. That’s why it’s called your Sun Sign. It’s also called Star Sign, because of the stellar constellation it represents. Click the header to read more about the twelve Zodiac signs and what they tell about personality traits.

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