Addey, John (1920-1982)

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Addey, John (1920-1982)

Theosophist and astrologer, born at Barnsley, Yorkshire, England, on June 15, 1920. Addey earned his master's degree from Saint John's College, Cambridge. He became interested in astrology while at Cambridge, and after World War II he joined the Theosophical Society's Astrological Lodge, which brought him into a long-term relationship with C. E. O. Carter. In 1948 Carter established the Faculty of Astrological Studies to train astrologers, and Addey became one of its first students, obtaining his diploma in 1951.

Within a few years, however, he found himself doubtful of his art and its scientific underpinnings. He turned to scientific research, his most important focus centering on longevity and people suffering from polio. His observations led him to the development of a "wave" theory of astrology. He subsequently moved to integrate completed and ongoing statistical studies of astrological effects and the insights of Hindu astrology into what he termed harmonics, a system of astrology that emphasizes the integral divisions of the horoscope chart. He saw in harmonics a method of bringing a united theoretical base to the many different systems of astrology that were emerging in the postwar world.

In 1958 Addey led in the founding of the Astrological Association, a professional association of astrologers primarily in Great Britain. His underlying agenda was the development of harmonic theory, which he presented in a series of booklets in the 1970s.

Harmonics was initially received with some enthusiasm by Addey's astrological colleagues; however, as astrologers worked with Addey's thought, they found it was too abstract and offered little insight to assist in the essential task of interpreting an astrological chart. As such, Addey's theoretical work was soon forgotten, though his empirical studies remain a major building block of contemporary astrology's attempt to provide astrology with an acceptable scientific base.

In 1970 Addey founded the Urania Trust, which had the exceedingly ambitious goal of reintegrating astrology into astronomy, an objective on which almost no progress has been made. Addey also served a term as editor of the Astrological Journal.

Addey died in 1982.


Addey, John. Astrology Reborn. Tempe, Ariz.: American Federation of Astrologers, 1972.

. Harmonic Anthology. Tempe, Ariz.: American Federation of Astrologers, 1976.

. Harmonics in Astrology. Romford: L. N. Fowler, 1976.

. Selected Writings. Tempe, Ariz.: American Federation of Astrologers, 1976.

Lewis, James L. The Astrology Encyclopedia. Detroit: Gale Research, 1994.