Expertise ex stellis

The Polish astrologer Martin Bylica spent 30 years as the chief counselor and aide to the Hungarian king Matthias Corvinus. Bylica placed his astrological expertise in the service of the king, an expertise grounded in his ability to offer expert interpretations of the natural world.

L’horoscope de fondation de l’université de Pozsony

In the 1460s Europe’s most eminent astrologers—Johannes Regiomontanus and Martin Bylica—moved to Hungary teach at the fledging University of Pozsony. Full of optimism, they cast a horoscope for the founding of the institution. Despite their confidence, the university closed just a few years later.

Astrology and Politics in 15th-c. Hungary

Astrology occupied an important place Matthias Corvinus’s political program, from his library and collection of instruments to the horoscopes that decorated his palaces at Buda and Visegrád. One of his chief advisors was the Polish astrologer Martin Bylica, who offered political and military advice throughout the king’s reign.

Astrology in the University Curriculum

Astrology was a core subject in the medieval university. Examining published and unpublished lecture notes, we glimpse university masters teaching undergraduate courses and advanced study in astrology and medicine.

Astrology as Political Propaganda

In the early 16th century Turkish armies seemed poised to conquer Europe. Imperial counselors used the science of astrology and cheap print to shape public opinion about the looming Ottoman armies.

Astrology, Politics, and the French Disease

In 1496 the German scholar Joseph Grünpeck drew on astrology to explain the causes, spread, and symptoms of the French Disease and used his expertise to gain a position at the imperial court.