Question five: on quantity

The reason why there are twelve signs in heaven and neither more nor less that twelve, is so that there could be four seasons in the year, namely spring, summer, autumn and winter. And each season has three months so that there is a tempering of complexions in things below through the circle, through the square and through the triangle. As four times three makes three squares, so the circle is composed of triangles and squares, where four triangles exist in a circular way in four squares and three squares in four triangles. But this could not be so if heaven were naturally divided into a larger or smaller number of parts than twelve signs. And heaven would neither have the nature of the square or of the triangle, and its virtue would be deficient in the property, proportion and nature of the square and of the triangle. And with this deficiency, it could not be the cause of the circles, squares and triangles that exist in things below.
     Among other reasons that can be given for the fact that there are naturally neither more nor less than seven planets, we will give these three.
     The first reason is, that seven days make up a week, in which each planet has its day; and the course of the year is completed through weeks, which could not happen if there were eight or six planets.
     The second reason is, because in the number seven there are triangles in squares, and squares in triangles, in circular fashion. As Saturn, Jupiter and Mars make up one triangle through the natural participation of complexions, natures, properties and conditions; and Jupiter, Mars and the Sun make another triangle, and both these triangles are made up of four planets, as said above. And there is another triangle made by Mars, the Sun and Venus, and yet another triangle made by the Sun, Venus and Mercury; and both triangles exist in circular fashion in a square, made of Mars, the Sun, Venus, and Mercury. And there is another triangle, made by Venus, Mercury and the Moon, and another one made by Mercury, the Moon and Saturn; and both exist in circular fashion in one square made by Venus, Mercury, the Moon and Saturn. And there is yet another triangle, made by the Moon, Saturn and Jupiter, and this one exists in a circular fashion with the triangle made of Mercury, the Moon and Saturn, in the square made of Mercury, the Moon, Saturn and Jupiter.
     Therefore there are seven triangles in four squares, and four squares in seven triangles, all this in a circular way according to the operations, natures and influences that they transmit to things below. And each planet is with a triangle and a square, and this could not happen without a determined number of neither more nor less than seven planets.
     There is furthermore another nature and mode that declares that there cannot be and must not be any more or less than seven planets. And this mode is as follows: By experience, we sense and we imagine that there are two complexions that are called active, namely heat and cold. And there are two others that are called passive as compared to the said two complexions which are greater; and these are called passive qualities, namely moisture and dryness.
     And for this reason, there must be two planets that are similar and concordant through their proper and appropriated qualities, and that multiply heat: these are Mars and the Sun, which have the complexion of B. And there must be two other planets concordant through their proper and appropriated qualities, such as Venus and the Moon, which have the complexion of D. for multiplying cold. And as Saturn is of a dry and cold complexion and there is no other planet that has dryness as a proper quality. And the same with Jupiter, as it has no peer of the complexion of A.
And thus the proper qualities of C. and of A. are passive qualities, because they have no peer to help them in the same way as there are two B.'s and two D.'s.
     And if there were eight planets, there would be a peer to constitute A.A. and a peer to constitute C.C. And moisture and dryness would have as great an action in things below as heat and cold have, and this cannot be so, as our experience tells us.
     And if there were only six planets, the said order would be destroyed in them. With this destruction, nature would suffer passion on account of the vacuum that it would have because of the destruction of the said order. And nature cannot sustain any such vacuum.
     It has been proved that in heaven there must be twelve signs and that there must be seven planets. Now we want to investigate why they have proper and appropriated qualities.

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