Thomas Cranmer (July 2, 1489 – March 21, 1556)
This is the final one of the four men named Thomas who lived during Henry VIII’s reign, and had something to do with the creation of the Church of England. Thomas and Henry, eh? Echoes of Henry II and Thomas Becket. (Also where the term, “Every Tom, Dick and Harry” comes from.)
I rectified the timing of his birth chart to show the age (12) when Cranmer’s father (Saturn) died, followed by his entry into the newly created Jesus College, Cambridge (Uranus) at age 14. I think we’re on solid ground. Note the two inconjuncts pointing to his Ascendant @ 11 Leo. Interesting.
Saturn Conjunct Uranus
This aspect occurs only once every forty-five years. It signifies a heavy internal tension that can have both creative and difficult results. At its most difficult, it may make you feel restless and irritable, not knowing whether to go forward or backward. This in turn creates tension, and you try to get away from whatever is causing the conflict. If this process goes too far, you may suddenly make a rash and impulsive move simply to get away from the tension by any means at all. When you are older, you may suddenly break away from a relationship or quit your job or suddenly have an emotional outburst with little or no warning to those around you. You find it difficult to release tension slowly, which would be the better way.
On the other hand, if you keep this tension within reasonable limits, it can make you very alert and attentive to any task that you are involved in. And because you can hold in your tenseness, you can persist in the face of difficulty longer than most people and thereby get a lot done. Just be sure you know when the tension has built up enough and do no hold it in until the pressure becomes unbearable.
Also you are able o maintain a balance between caution and change in your life. You can go through very major changes in a careful and orderly manner without blowing everything apart, as long as you don’t wait too long to do so. The changes that you bring about in this manner are more lasting than those that are done with less care.
(To me, Cranmer represents the impulse for change, with an eye to maintain the status quo as long as it is practically possible: a perfect blending of Saturn and Uranus.)
When in the service of your King, it is sometimes better to die before his demise than to live beyond his reign. By the time Mary I took over the English throne, Cranmer was in deep doo-doo. She wanted England to return to its Roman Catholic past, and he was Archbishop of Canterbury (head of the Church of England), effectively standing in her way. There was nowhere to go but into the fire.
I do not know exactly when Cranmer was burned that fateful day in March, 1556, but by setting the clock a 10:00 am, we can get a glimpse of the circumstances of his death. Pluto is conjunct the Midheaven in Pisces; and the Sun, Mars and Saturn (11th house) are conjunct in Aries (death by Fire). The Moon at 19 Leo in the 3rd house probably represents Mary in this chart. He thrust his writing hand into the fire first as punishment for causing any harm when he signed his renunciation of beliefs.
His legacy lives on, in spite of his recanting of all heretical acts. The Book of Common Prayer is deemed to be written by him.
It is difficult to ascertain how much of the Prayer Book is Cranmer’s personal composition. Generations of liturgical scholars have been able to track down the sources that he used, including the Sarum Rite, writings from Hermann von Wied, and several Lutheran sources including Osiander and Justus Jonas. More problematic is determining how Cranmer worked on the book and with whom he worked. Despite the lack of knowledge of who might have helped him, he is given the credit for the editorship and the overall structure of the book.Wikipedia