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nadir: The nadir is the ecliptic degree most directly below; the intersection point of the local meridian with the ecliptic below the horizon. The lowest point in the local sky on the path of the planets, it is also known as the cusp of the fourth house, or imum coeli (I.C.). The nadir is most intimate and personal point in the chart, symbolizing one’s most inner feelings, roots, and internal sense of self.

native: the individual being considered in a chart.

natural house ruler: the planetary ruler of the sign corresponding to the number of the house in question (e.g., the Sun rules Leo, the fifth sign, and is therefore the natural ruler of the fifth house).

nebula (Latin: "cloud; pl. nebulae): an interstellar cloud of dust, hydrogen gas, and plasma, thought by early astronomers to be actual clouds in the heavens. The name nebula was originally applied to any extended, diffuse and unresolved astronomical object such as the Andromeda Nebula (actually the Andromeda Galaxy). In 1925 Edwin Hubble was able to use the 100" Hooker telescope at Mt. Wilson to resolve galaxies into their component stars, showing that they are galaxies in their own right—and beyond the Milky Way.

Today, nebula refers to star-forming regions like the Eagle and Rosette nebulae on pages 216-217. The cold gas, dust, and molecular hydrogen in a nebula coalesce under internal gravitational pressure and external shock waves from supernovae until thermonuclear fusion can finally be sustained at its core. At that point it becomes a star. The remaining material orbiting this now burning, central body eventually forms planets and other solar system objects (see pages 70-71).

Nemesis: the Greek spirit of the distributor of fortune (neither bad nor good), divine retribution, and punisher of hubris; she led the Furies, or Erinyes.

Nereid: Any of the 50 children of the Titans Nereus and Doris, or Bounty. They lived with their father in a silvery cave deep in the Aegean, traveled with Neptune, and often helped sailors in storms. The most famous were Thetis: mother of Achilles, wife of Peleus, and Zeus’ rescuer; Amphitrite: Neptune’s wife; and Galatea: the unrequited love of the Cyclops Polyphemus.

NGC: "New Galactic Catalog," a list of about 10,000 celestial objects compiled in 1888 by J. L. Dreyer; now supplemented by IC catalogs of 5385 objects.

node(s), Dragon’s Head/Tail: points of intersection of a planet’s orbit with the ecliptic. Usually only the Moon’s nodes are interpreted. The Moon’s south node (Á: a cup holding water) denotes talents, or habit patterns from past lives: that which we know well. The Moon’s north node («) is that with which we are least familiar: important new elements we need to add to our lives to grow and to become whole. Comfortable familiarity at the south node pulls us away from the north node, making growing there more difficult.

novile: a minor aspect of 40°: 1/9th of the circle; in Hindu astrology, the marriage partner; to the Greeks, the ideal, or completion; orb 0.5°-1°.




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© Carl Woebcke, The Glossary: the letter N, 1991-2016. All rights reserved.