The End of the Power Couple: Bill and Melinda Gates Divorce
On New Year’s Day 1994, fiery, clever Melinda French married billionaire super-nerd William Gates III in Lanai, Hawaii. It turned out to be one of the most globally influential partnerships of the last quarter of century.
Cosmically speaking, it was a wonderful day for a wedding, blessed by a conjunction of the lovers Mars and Venus, sextiled by lucky Jupiter and trined by the lovely Moon. Juno herself is fortunately placed in Libra, the sign of marriage.
And probably, it was a good marriage while it lasted. But they have had to contend with trial by Pluto for the last decade, so it can’t have been easy. Pluto, of course, rules vast wealth, and money on that scale corrupts unless you determinedly, consciously battle against it, as it seems the Gates have done together through their Foundation and the way they have brought up their children.
Yet 27 years later, the Gates are divorcing, which just goes to show that even the best wedding date does not guarantee a marriage that withstands everything.
The chart for the wedding day is set for noon, so please ignore the houses.
There’s a giant stellium in Capricorn, of course, so it’s a VIP wedding, a real power couple, with love (Venus) on one end and idealism (Uranus-Neptune) at the other.
You can see some stress today from the transits to this wedding chart. Transiting Saturn makes a square to the rather sombre Jupiter in Scorpio, and the reversed nodal return approaches, which means a tickle of the wheel of fate. The Saturn Return is also approaching. Normally, you can feel that Saturn Return coming as soon as the old Devil moves into the sign, which he did at Christmas — that might have been icy in the Gates household.
But the chart that really tells the tale is the progressed chart, the one moved forward by a day, used by astrologers usually to see how a person is developing within.
Today, you can see that the Gates marriage has a Progressed Lunar Return to the exact degree — (astrology works!) This happens when a person is about 27 years old — and is one explanation of the 27 “early death” club.
It is a danger point, or a point of fulfilment. The moment when the progressed Moon has completed one entire cycle of the Zodiac. In 27 years, a person, or a marriage will have experienced a flavour of everything emotionally from the darkness of Scorpio to the flippancy of Gemini. Not until then is a someone considered emotionally mature. It is from here that we step into a Saturn Return.
What is more, tr Saturn is on the progressed Sun. Remember that Saturn is lord of endings. And progressed Saturn only just moved into Pisces a few months ago. He’s moved from the rigid world of fixed Aquarius to emotional, freedom-loving Pisces. On some level, the marriage may have felt constricting — at least for someone.
What finally sparked the decision to end things may have been the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn back in December on the progressed Mars of the marriage chart.
And progressed Juno? Pluto has been stationing (that is intensifying) in a hard square to Juno, reaching a crunch just at the end of April.
Wth a wedding chart like this, you can see what hard work it’s been but also strong, productive, magnificent and fulfilling. I think it would be a mistake to see this divorce as a failure. It’s simply the end of a cycle.