Dec 26, 2022 • 5M

Mercury Retrograde in Capricorn with Venus

Testing responsibility and commitment in relationships and communication

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Rebeccah Dean
Astrology podcast at the crossroads of Jyotish (Vedic astrology) and traditional Western Astrology. To find out more about me and my work, swing by my newsletter at or my website,
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Please note: the first part of this text is written from the perspective of Western astrology.

On December 29, 2022 Mercury will go retrograde in the sign of Capricorn. On this day it will also be conjunct Venus.

A retrograde cycle also asks us to reexamine, test and adjust certain topics pertaining to the planet in question. With Mercury and Venus kicking off the ride here, we’re called to examine communication (Mercury) in relationships (Venus) or women in a broader sense.

Some thoughts on this Mercury in Capricorn retrograde cycle

Ruled by Saturn, Capricorn is about responsibility, hard work and commitment, and Mercury in this sign gains a certain sense of gravitas. This isn’t chatterbox Mercury talking a mile a minute about nothing and everything. Instead, he has a “say what you mean and do what you say” kind of feel that might come across as overly serious and taciturn.

Venus helps bring in some artistic flair to communication, as well as desire for relating. In this day and age, when your next fling is just a swipe to the right away, people sometimes forget that real, lasting (Saturnian terms!) relationships take hard work (and there’s another one). But this is exactly the strength of Venus in Capricorn.

Some questions to ask yourself on December 29 and throughout this retrograde cycle (which fit in perfectly with the Capricorn New Moon on December 29!):

  • How can I be more responsible in my communication, especially in my relationships?

  • How can I better commit to artistic projects and how I relate to others?

  • What serious conversations have I been putting off, especially in my relationship? How can I have them now and still ensure I remain respectful?

  • How do I treat and talk to women? What improvements, if any, can I commit to?

  • What work can I do to better keep my word?

Another thing to keep in mind:

Mercury is the planet of communication, transportation, technology and business, and when he’s retrograde, things can go array in each of those areas. E-mail that don’t make it to your inbox, planes delayed and buses running off schedule, a slump in the market, post-Christmas packages delivered to the wrong address – these could all be the kind of snafus that pop up during this period.

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Astro stats

December 29, 2022 – Mercury stations retrograde at 24 degrees 21 in Capricorn and is tightly conjunct Venus

January 8, 2023 – Mercury stations direct at 8 degree 8 in Capricorn

February 7, 2023 – Mercury returns to the same degrees it was in when it went retrograde. Whatever you were personally exploring and re-examining when the retrograde period started will likely be revisited at this time.

As always, look at the house in your chart with Capricorn on the cusp to get a better feel about what topics might come up for you during this Mercury retrograde cycle.

Photo by Sergio Martínez on Unsplash

What does Jyotish say about Mercury retrograde?

Although retrograde planets may be in different signs in the sidereal zodiac than they are in the tropical zodiac, the retrogradation periods are the same in both systems. However, Vedic astrology sees retrograde planets in a different light than the traditional Western system.

In traditional Western astrology, a retrograde planet – in the natal chart or by transit – is considered a weakness in the planet’s significations. For example, if someone has Mercury retrograde in their chart, they may have difficulties in communication, if Venus is retrograde, they may struggle in relationships, and so on.

However, in traditional Jyotish, a retrograde planet is seen as extra strong. If a person has a retrograde planet in their chart, the desires they have for whatever the planet signifies will be stronger (i.e. communication for Mercury retrograde, relationships for Venus retrograde, etc.). However, because this planet has become so strong, it also difficult to balance, therefore it is prone to extremes: for example, someone with Mercury retrograde natally might either never stop talking or never talk at all, someone with Saturn retrograde natally might be a workaholic or avoid working altogether, etc. If you want to read more about retrograde planets from the Vedic perspective, this article lays things out nicely.

So if the takes in Western and Vedic astrology are not the same, then which one is the “right” one? As I wrote in this post, both work equally well, they often just describe the same things in a different way.

A good way to think about it is to compare both systems to two different computer programs that serve the same function. Some people may prefer one program to the other, and one program may get the job done in a more elegant or user friendly way, but in the end the same results are achieved.

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