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What Does Each Zodiac Sign Mean? Learn The Names, Symbols, And More!

circular zodiac chart with symbols, blue.

The word zodiac is used in astronomy and astrology to refer to the band of sky over which the sun, moon, and planets move–as seen from Earth, at least. The zodiac contains a number of constellations, and the sun (or other celestial body) is said to be “in” a constellation when it moves into the portion of the zodiac that includes that constellation. The zodiac can be traced back to ancient civilizations, such as the ancient Greeks and Romans, who believed the position of heavenly bodies could be used to predict the future. For them, astronomy and astrology were one and the same–which is definitely not the case anymore!

In astrology, a sign of the zodiac refers to one of 12 specific constellations of the zodiac that the sun passes through. A person’s particular sign of the zodiac is the one that the sun was in when they were born. It is a belief in astrology that a person’s personality can be predicted using their sign of the zodiac. According to astrology, it is also possible to predict the future by looking at the position of the sun, moon, and planets in comparison to the zodiac constellations. An astrological map of the planets and zodiac signs is called a horoscope; the word horoscope is also used to refer to a prediction of the future using such a map.

If this all sounds interesting to you, you’re in luck! We have gazed at the stars and charted the 12 different signs of the zodiac typically used in astrology. As a bonus, we will list the 2022 dates associated with each one, explain a little bit about the symbol of each sign, and give some astrological info about what each sign says about a person’s personality.

Please note, these dates may vary slightly from year to year due to the timing of the spring equinox each year. Consult an official chart to see where the dates land each year.

Chart your linguistic stars by taking a closer look at the meaning and history of the term zodiac.

Zodiac chart for 2022

Sign Symbol
(in emoji form)
2022 Dates
Capricorn December 21 (2021) – January 19
Aquarius January 20 – February 17
Pisces February 18 – March 19
Aries March 20 – April 19
Taurus April 20 – May 20
Gemini May 21 – June 20
Cancer June 21 – July 21
Leo July 22 – August 22
Virgo August 23 – September 22
Libra September 23 – October 22
Scorpio October 23 – November 21
Sagittarius November 22 – December 20

Capricorn | the Goat

 

  • 2022 Dates: The dates of Capricorn begin in December and end in January. This means that the 2021–2022 Capricorn season was December 21, 2021 until January 19, 2022.  The 2022–2023 Capricorn season begins on December 21 and continues into 2023.
  • Symbol: ♑  The symbol of Capricorn is said to represent a sea goat, a mythical creature said to be half-goat and half-fish.
  • Characteristics: On the plus side, Capricorns are said to be tenacious and pragmatic. At the same time, Capricorns are said to be sticklers for the rules and ferocious when upset.

During the Capricorn and Aquarius season of 2022, the planet Mercury will experience its first of four retrogrades, a period during which Mercury appears to move backwards in the sky. According to astrology, the Mercury retrograde is a time of great frustration and confusion when it is hard to get anything done. The first retrograde will last from January 13 until February 3. Interestingly, the last 2022 retrograde will also happen during the time of Capricorn, when it begins on December 28.

If lack of knowledge about Capricorn really gets your goat, check out our definition of Capricorn, our in-depth look at the sign of Capricorn, and our guide to how people use the Capricorn emoji.

Aquarius | the Water Bearer

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins January 20 and ends February 17.
  • Symbol: ♒ The squiggly lines of the Aquarius symbol are said to represent water.
  • Characteristics: Aquarians are said to be assertive and creative. Aquarians are also said to be impulsive loners.

If you are thirsty for more information about Aquarius, check out our definition of Aquarius and our in-depth look at the sign of Aquarius, and a guide to how people use the Aquarius emoji.

Pisces | the Fishes

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins February 18 and ends March 19.
  • Symbol: ♓ The symbol of Pisces is thought to represent two fish tied together by a rope swimming in opposite directions.
  • Characteristics: A stereotypical Pisces is said to be an adventurous, compassionate person who may get a little too anxious or needy.

You can fish up more info about Pisces by checking out our definition of Pisces and our in-depth look at the sign of Pisces, and a guide to how people use the Pisces emoji.

Aries | the Ram

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins March 20 and ends April 19.
  • Symbol: ♈ The symbol of Aries is said to represent the head of a ram.
  • Characteristics: The rams of Aries are said to be confident and fiery people. However, they may butt heads with others because they are infamously impatient and honest with their opinions.

There’s no reason to be sheepish when it comes to learning about Aries because we have a great definition of Aries and an in-depth look at the sign of Aries.

Taurus | the Bull

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins April 20 and ends May 20.
  • Symbol: ♉ The circle with horns symbol of Taurus is said to represent the head of a bull.
  • Characteristics: Taurus bulls are said to be loyal and persistent. At the same time, these bulls are often stereotyped as being lazy and, appropriately, bullheaded.

The second Mercury retrograde begins in Taurus season on May 10 and lasts until June 2. Additionally, the first of two total lunar eclipses in 2022 will occur on May 15. In astrology, a lunar eclipse is a sign of great change or major events.

If you want to learn a lot more about Taurus, take the bull by the horns and check out our definition of Taurus and our in-depth look at the sign of Taurus.

Gemini | the Twins

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins May 21 and ends June 20.
  • Symbol: ♊ The symbol of Gemini is the Roman numeral for the number two, representing the Gemini twins (two people).
  • Characteristics: People rocking the twins are said to be highly intelligent and sociable. On the other hand, they are also said to be superficial and indecisive.

For a double helping of Gemini info, check out our definition of Gemini, our in-depth look at the sign of Gemini, and our guide to how people use the Gemini emoji.

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Cancer | the Crab

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins June 21 and ends July 21.
  • Symbol: ♋ The sideways 6’s and/or 9’s of the symbol of Cancer are thought to represent crab claws.
  • Characteristics: The crabs of Cancer are said to be charitable people and loyal friends. On the other hand, they also tend to be blunt and are known to get … crabby when someone tries to get them out of their shells.

If you want to learn a lot more about Cancer, you need to get your claws on our definition of Cancer and our in-depth look at the sign of Cancer, and a guide to how people use the Cancer emoji.

Leo | the Lion

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins July 22 and ends August 22.
  • Symbol: ♌ The symbol of Leo is thought to depict a simplified drawing of a lion.
  • Characteristics: Leo lions are said to be proud and brave while sometimes getting a little too arrogant or competitive.

We’d be lyin’ if we said we didn’t know anything about Leo because we have an awesome definition of Leo, an in-depth look at the sign of Leo, and a guide to how people use the Leo emoji.

Virgo | the Maiden

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins August 23 and ends September 22.
  • Symbol: ♍ The curly M of Virgo has many theories behind it. Some common guesses are that the symbol is an M for maiden, represents a virgin with crossed legs, or depicts human intestines.
  • Characteristics: Virgos are said to be diligent and organized. At the same time, Virgos are said to be overly critical perfectionists who tend to worry a lot.

Virgo season will see our third Mercury retrograde of 2202 that begins on September 9 and ends on October 1.

If you want to learn a lot more about Virgo, you need to Vir-go check out our definition of Virgo, our in-depth look at the sign of Virgo, and our guide to how people use the Virgo emoji.

Libra | the Scales

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins September 23 and ends October 22.
  • Symbol: ♎ The symbol of Libra is said to depict either a setting sun or a pair of scales.
  • Characteristics: Libra is famously the sign of clever extroverts. These social butterflies are also said to be vain and hate making tough decisions.

If you weighed the pros and cons of learning about Libra, you’d know you can’t miss our definition of Libra, our in-depth look at the sign of Libra, and our guide to how people use the Libra emoji.

Scorpio | the Scorpion

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins October 23 and ends November 21.
  • Symbol: ♏ The symbol of Scorpio is said to represent a scorpion.
  • Characteristics: The scorpions of Scorpio are said to be magnetic thrill-seekers. Scorpios are also often said to be envious and fascinated by the macabre.

Scorpio will host the second lunar eclipse of 2022, which occurs on November 7.

You don’t need to brave a den of scorpions to learn about Scorpio. All you need to do is check out our definition of Scorpio, our in-depth look at the sign of Scorpio, and our guide to how people use the Scorpio emoji.

Sagittarius | the Archer

 

  • 2022 Dates: Begins November 22 and ends December 20.
  • Symbol: ♐ The symbol of Sagittarius is an arrow with a line through it, representing a bow and arrow.
  • Characteristics: Sagittarians are said to be highly independent adventurers who are always full of imagination. On the flip side, they are also said to be blunt and impatient.

If your goal is to learn about Sagittarius, you can stay on target by checking out our definition of Sagittarius, our in-depth look at the sign of Sagittarius, and our guide to how people use the Sagittarius emoji.

Ophiuchus | the Serpent-Bearer

Ophiuchus is an astrological constellation known as “the Serpent-Bearer.” Like many other constellations, Ophiuchus isn’t typically considered to be one of the signs of the zodiac. However, a few astrologers do consider Ophiuchus to be a 13th sign of the zodiac as the sun does pass through it during the year. If it is considered part of the zodiac, it would be placed before Sagittarius as the sun typically passes through Ophiuchus from late November until mid December. If you’d like to know more about Ophiuchus and how NASA once accidentally caused an astrological controversy about it, you can check out our profile of Ophiuchus.

Take the quiz!

Has this review of the zodiac signs left you seeing stars? Then visit our Zodiac Word List where you can test your knowledge of these words with flashcards and more. Or, if your horoscope says there is a bright challenge in your future, head over to our quiz on the zodiac!

We're over the moon about cosmic knowledge, including this guide to the many names we have for the moon!

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