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By Swami Harshananda

Sometimes transliterated as: Hora, HorA, Horaa

Horā literally means ‘astrology’.


The word is supposed to originate from the greek word ‘hora’. It was used for the first time by Varāhamihira (6th century A. D.).

Branches of Astrology

Astrology or jyotiṣa includes three skandhas or branches:

  1. Tantra - determination of the motions of planets
  2. Horā - jātaka or horoscope
  3. Śākhā - various kinds of divinations

A work that embodies all these three is called ‘samhitā’.

Meaning in Astrology

Horā has two other meanings in astrology:

  1. Lagna - that sign which is rising on the eastern horizon at the particular moment
  2. Half of the rāśi - zodiacal sign


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore