Aries on the Ascendant
The Aries Ascendant gives an outgoing personality—one who is energetic and impulsive. If you have this cardinal fire sign on the Ascendant, you express enthusiasm, impatience, and a zest for life. You are not easily deterred, and when presented with a challenge, you rise to the occasion. Always seeking the next adventure, you are quick to lose interest once the excitement wears off. If you have Aries on the Ascendant or Mars (the ruling planet of Aries) in the first house, you should surround yourself with others who can pick up where you left off. Aries is the sign of new beginnings and is best at getting things started; then it is up to others to complete the task.
Taurus on the Ascendant
The Taurus Ascendant shows a quiet personality—one who is strong, steady, and cannot be pushed. If you have this fixed earth sign on the Ascendant, your appearance is serene, and you demonstrate patience and stamina. You are one who holds fast to your commitments, and you work hard to build a comfortable life for yourself and your loved ones. Your steadiness is comforting to others, and you may often find yourself in the role of counselor. With Taurus on the Ascendant or Venus (the ruling planet of Taurus) in the first house, you may be creative, talented, and artistic. Taurus is the sign of values, and when it is on the Ascendant, it helps you define what is of value. Money and possessions will be important.
Gemini on the Ascendant
The Gemini Ascendant shows a friendly, talkative, and charming personality. If you have this mutable air sign on the Ascendant, information is of the utmost importance and you never can have enough. At times you may feel pulled in two directions as you struggle to integrate certain aspects of your personality. You have a witty charm and a way with words, making you the life of the party. Always on the go, you prefer to keep busy and may find it difficult to relax. At times you can take on too much, leaving you overwhelmed. With Gemini on the Ascendant or Mercury (the ruling planet of Gemini) in the first house, you are likely to have good communication skills and a knack for writing.
Cancer on the Ascendant
The Cancer Ascendant gives a shy and sensitive outer shell. If you have this cardinal water sign on the Ascendant, you will make decisions based on feelings. Strong intuition can be characterized as a sixth sense, giving you the ability to tap into what others are feeling. With Cancer on the Ascendant or the Moon (the ruler of Cancer) in the first house, you are responsive and receptive to the needs of others. Your face may appear round, reflective of the full Moon. You may be restless, moody, or easily hurt, partly because you tend to take things too personally. A Cancer Ascendant is helpful in sensing public opinion; you may be involved with community, civic, or social issues.
Leo on the Ascendant
The Leo Ascendant gives a friendly and self-confident personality, one who walks with pride and assurance. If you have this fixed fire sign on the Ascendant, you are courageous and don't mind taking risks. Strong vitality and a positive outlook keep you going well into your later years. When Leo is on the Ascendant or the Sun (the ruler of Leo) is in the first house, you may roar from time to time but will never hold a grudge. Conscious of your image and reputation, you take great pride in everything you do. Should others fail to appreciate your efforts, you may feel wounded. You do not take kindly to criticism and will never forget a snub.
Virgo on the Ascendant
The Virgo Ascendant gives an alert and youthful appearance; you always look younger than your years. If you have this mutable earth sign on the Ascendant, you are practical and willing to work at something until it's perfect. You have a quiet and refined demeanor and a desire to be of help to others. With Virgo on the Ascendant or Mercury (the ruling planet of Virgo) in the first house, you are analytical and may feel your efforts are never quite good enough. An inquisitive nature and an interest in so many things keep you young at heart.
Libra on the Ascendant
The Libra Ascendant gives a charming personality and an artistic and creative flair. If you have this cardinal air sign on the Ascendant, your nature is to seek balance through understanding. You strive to see both sides of an issue, yet you can debate your point with finesse. Librans often are found in the legal profession. With Libra on the Ascendant or Venus (the ruling planet of Libra) in the first house, you cannot thrive in an inharmonious environment. You prefer to avoid disagreements and may try too hard to please others, to your own detriment. You can be indecisive for fear of making a mistake. Your interest in people and natural social skills attract many friends.
Scorpio on the Ascendant
The Scorpio Ascendant gives a disarmingly magnetic personality and an emotional intensity that is somewhat hidden. If you have this fixed water sign on the Ascendant, your emotions are deep and often misunderstood. Powerful is the keyword for those with Scorpio on the Ascendant. You are soft-spoken, courageous, independent, and self-reliant. You can struggle to transform some aspect of yourself—there is a devil-angel mentality. With Scorpio on the Ascendant or Pluto (the ruling planet of Scorpio) in the first house, you are apt to hide your true feelings. Even when you implicitly trust someone, you are cautious. Strength, determination, and focus enable to you achieve your goals.
Sagittarius on the Ascendant
The Sagittarius Ascendant gives an outgoing personality and a candor that often catches people off-guard. If you have this mutable fire sign on the Ascendant, you are always looking toward new horizons. You may prefer casual contacts to in-depth relationships and have many acquaintances but fewer friends. With Sagittarius on the Ascendant or Jupiter (the ruling planet of Sagittarius) in the first house, your optimism inspires others, and you may be found helping those who cannot help themselves. Fair-minded, you believe in equality for all. Freedom is important, and you avoid settling down. You love to take chances and live life to the fullest.
Capricorn on the Ascendant
The Capricorn Ascendant gives a serious, mature personality; often there were difficult circumstances early in life. If you have this cardinal earth sign on the Ascendant, you are a natural leader who can overcome obstacles others would find daunting. You have great ambition and achieve your goals through sheer determination. With Capricorn on the Ascendant or Saturn (the ruling planet of Capricorn) in the first house, you are more sensitive than you let on and, like your symbol, the goat, will keep climbing until you reach your goals. You are ethical and responsible, with a strong sense of duty. Money and position are important, and once you make a commitment to something, it is as good as done.
Aquarius on the Ascendant
The Aquarius Ascendant gives a positive, stimulating, and somewhat unusual personality. If you have this fixed air sign on the Ascendant, your enthusiasm inspires others. You are intuitive and original and have an eclectic interest in many different subjects, some of which may be unusual—like astrology, for instance. With Aquarius on the Ascendant or Uranus (the ruling planet of Aquarius) in the first house, you prefer to be left to your own creative devices. You cannot bear conformity and will go your own way. Anything that is new or cutting-edge appeals to you, and your insights may be at the forefront of change. You can be rebellious if challenged.
Pisces on the Ascendant
The Pisces Ascendant gives a gentle, thoughtful personality. If you have this mutable water sign on the Ascendant, you are receptive to those around you and sensitive to your environment. Empathetic and intuitive, you can be overwhelmed by too much input. Spending time alone helps you maintain inner balance. With Pisces on the Ascendant or Neptune (the ruling planet of Pisces) in the first house, you have strong psychic perception and a desire to help people. You may have musical talent or other artistic inclinations. You are romantic and have a tendency to dream your dreams rather than live them. However, when you believe in yourself, your dreams can come true.
Excerpted from Astrology for Beginners, by Joann Hampar