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Cancer 21 June – 22 July

Cancer 21 June – 22 July

The crab’s claws symbolise the clinging nature of this sign, but the glyph also suggest the nurturing quality of the breast.

Element: Water
Symbol: Crab
Ruling Planet: Mars
Precious Birthstones: Ruby
Semi-precious Birthstones: Moonstone


In Hindi astrology, the sign of Cancer is named Karka and its Lord is Moon. Divine associations with Cancer in Renaissance astrology are Luna/Diana, both goddesses that represent the Moon, Cancer's ruling planet.


The great nurturer of the zodiac, Cancer is never upfront or showy, making this personality easy to overlook. What lies beneath the crab’s shell is well hidden and hard to fathom. Closely aligned to the phases of the Moon, Cancer swings between kind, caring and compassionate, and tough, prickly and full of self-pity. There is a distinct clash between the ambitious and outgoing part of the sign and the soft, sensitive aspect that desperately yearns for approval. Cancer wants to belong, to be part of family and community, but also craves success and is quite prepared to alienate people to achieve it. Home is of vital importance to Cancer. Any disruption at home Causes an emotional angst that affects every other part of life. Moving house is a major trauma. Sentimental and nostalgic, Cancer treasures everything from the past. What others see as clutter, Cancer clings on to as essential to his or her feelings of security.


Cancer rarely goes directly to the point and frequently finds him or herself overwhelmed by emotion, so that thought processes can be irrational and security orientated. Events and relationships of the past also play an enormous part in intellectual decisions. While the typical Cancerian mind works best when intuition is allowed free rein, any decisions made this way benefit from logical assessment at a later point as they may have been influenced by emotional needs or other people’s feelings.


Cancer puts all else aside in a desire to protect and nurture. Being so tuned into other people’s feelings and needs, it can be difficult for this personality to draw back from others and define his or her own position. It’s a sign that often feels put upon and is prone to mood swings. Misunderstandings and resentments arise all too easily in a prickly emotional landscape where everything is assessed in the light of previous experience. When self is threatened, which it often is, this secretive, vulnerable personality withdraws into a womb-like environment where emotions can be processed and understood.


Highly intuitive of other people’s needs. Cancer is extremely caring and fiercely protective. There are times when this solicitous sign seems to be the social worker for the rest of the zodiac. In the professional sphere, the shrewdness of the Cancerian mind, coupled with an excellent memory, often translates as business acumen.


Weaknesses arise out of emotional sensitivity. When vulnerable, Cancer becomes jealous and possessive, grabbing at whatever represents security.


The shadow side of Cancer arises from the strong emotional hold this sign would like to have over things, and people. It’s a slippery shadow, born of personal insecurity.


The cancer character is almost always burdened by situations or relationships of the past that Cancer refuses to let go. There may be issues of co-dependence and ‘smother love’ that need attention. Positive karma often takes the form of the nurturing Cancer has given. The challenge for this sign is to find a way to nurture self rather than to rely on emotional support from others.


Home, anything to do with water, items of sentimental value, good food.


The limelight, emotional independence in others.


The security orientated sign feels broke without a substantial nest egg. Cancer is often accused of meanness but is generous with loved ones. As this personality type has a flair for business and rarely trusts others, financial affairs are usually self-managed. Investments are considered carefully.

As a parent

Flowing with maternal feeling, Cancer is a caring and solicitous parent who provides a loving home environment. At the extreme of the sign, the love can be possessive so hindering the development of self-sufficiency. A Cancerian parent stands by heart in mouth if a child is the least adventurous and will become ferocious if that child is threatened by danger, real or imagined.

As a child

The emerging Cancerian needs a stable, protective environment in which to learn and the constant reassurance of parental love. This is an affectionate child who wants to remain close to his or her parents. A great deal of encouragement is necessary to help young Cancers spread their wings.


Nurturing Cancer makes an excellent social worker, nursery nurse, nanny, midwife, home or care-worker, human resources director, housing officer, nursery teacher or nurse. The connection with food is borne out in careers such as hotelier, caterer or chef; and with the home in property related work, interior or textile design. As this sign is happy on or near water, a career s a boat builder, fisherman or sailor would be appropriate. Other suitable occupations are antique dealer, museum curator, business person or historian.

Leisure activities

With a firm emphasis on homemaking, activities such as needlework, knitting, DIY, collecting antiques, visiting flea markets and dinner parties are all typical of the sign. Cancer’s strong affinity with water show itself in sailing, fishing and swimming. Silversmithing is a suitable hobby, as is photography. A favorite sport is wrestling. This kind-hearted sign also finds time for charity work.

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