Horary offers a lot of different techniques for an astrologer’s toolbox, but not all of them have equal weight or usefulness, and many of them will collect dust due to disuse. However, many overzealous practitioners will attempt to throw everything that they know at a single chart, regardless of if it is necessary. While these can be interesting exercises, they can leave the practitioner confused when information comes back seeming random or disconnected. This is often caused by so-called tertiary considerations.
It’s easier to identify tertiary considerations by first defining the other types. Primary considerations are things that are considered first. These are typically the significators of the querent and queisted. Horary astrology seeks to see these two planets united in some way to promise perfection, and it’s the most easy and clear to see if it is the primary significators involved.
Secondary significators are a bit more fuzzy to define, but they’re going to be planets that are related to the question, but maybe didn’t end up being the significator. An example would be if someone asks about money coming up in their future and Virgo rises on the Ascendant. In our hypothetical chart, Mercury (as Lord of the First) and Venus (as hypothetical Lord of the Second) would be primary significators, but Jupiter naturally rules wealth, so we’ll want to look at him as well. Jupiter would serve as a secondary significator in this example. Similarly, the Moon is something of a secondary significator when compared to the primary significators of the querent and queisted.
Finally, just about everything else is a tertiary significator or consideration. This mostly leaves us with the Arabic Parts or Lots and the Fixed Stars. Both can be really useful techniques to help gain a better understanding of a chart, but they should not be considered to be important on their own, especially if the information they are coming back with seems at odds with other placements in a chart.
For example, in this chart concerning a mother’s lost social security card, we may check the area surrounding the card for any stars or Lots that might give us some information regarding the object. We see the object here is Mercury (Second from the Tenth house of the mother) who is in Sagittarius, but is also conjoined a malevolent fixed star called Lesath. Lesath would suggest that the card was in some sort of danger, but the card was fine and wasn’t in any sort of danger or damaged while it was lost. There are no Lots around Mercury in this chart.
Likewise in this chart about the health of a dog, the star Procyon rises on the Ascendant, which seems pretty apt since the star also relates to dogs, however it usually refers to dangers from dogs, which was not the case in this chart. On the Sixth house cusp lies the star Eltanin, which is another rather unfortunate star that has to do with accidents and violence. Here we see the theme of violence and attacks echoed twice with fixed star placements, but there was no history of such events in regards tot he animals health. Furthermore, Jupiter (the dog’s significator) was conjoined Alcyone in the Pleiades which has a history of being associated with unfortunate events that lead to tears. This is significant in that there was a real fear in the animal’s passing since it was very old. By following the stars, one would be led to believe there was a serious threat to the dog’s life, but the rest of the chart argues otherwise and the animal was able to recover.
Continuing this theme, looking at the Lots for the chart, on the Eleventh house (the turned Sixth from the Sixth, or illness of the animal) we have Servants and Rumors, which makes no sense. On Jupiter, we have the Lot of Disagreement. Sometimes the Lots just make no sense and need to be discarded.
Tertiary considersations shouldn’t be considered if they disagree with the rest of the chart. They can be useful when the chart is inconclusive one way or another, but generally enough information can be gathered from the primary and secondary significators to reach a judgment. Most of the time the Lots and stars will be used as something akin to Christmas lights. Fun to look at, but not very functional.