Uranus is an enigma amongst the planets, in that its poles point toward the Sun. No other planet does this, and Uranus is considered the astrological significator of personal uniqueness and individuality.
Uranus is one of the "modern planets" discovered by Sir William Herschel in 1781.
Uranus is the Latinized version of the Greek Ouranos, the ancient god of the sky. Just as its polar orientation is rather special, astrologers have found it to indicate that which is unique, unorthodox and revolutionary. Sir William Herschel's grandson was the discoverer of the use of fingerprints for identification. He was the first to use them in a practical way, and prove their permanence. This still reliable method of absolute identification carried on his family connection with Uranus; his father, like his grandfather was also an astronomer. Astrologers call Uranus the planet of truth.
Uranus requires approximately 84 years making its way through the Zodiac. Because it spends around 7 years in each sign, it cannot be considered a personal planet. The best way to study it is by its association with the personal planets, or by its journey through the houses of the birth horoscope.
Wherever it is at birth, or wherever it transits, it brings excitement, newness and the unexpected. Astrologers have attributed many new inventions to Uranus, especially that of electricity. The whole realm of electronic computing is more or less ascribed to Uranus in most astrological literature, and in practice, it seems to be connected with travel by air and non-conformity, as well as lightning strikes and earthquakes.
Uranus' period is around 84 years, so when it is about halfway there, or opposite its position that it held in the horoscope at birth, most people undergo what's often called a second childhood or midlife-crisis. Men usually try to recapture their youth, while women discover that their romantic lives have not come to an end because of the changes in their biology.
When the Zodiac was constructed, only the visible planets were counted as part of the Pythagorean and Platonic schemes of sacred geometry upon which its structure was designed. Some traditional astrologers go so far as to leave Uranus, Neptune and Pluto alone completely. Uranus can sometimes be seen by the naked eye, but its movement is so slow and its light is so dim (compared to Saturn) that it would hardly have been recognized as a planet before the age of the telescope.
Modern astrologers have force-fitted Uranus into the Zodiac by making it ruler of the sign Aquarius. Despite this assignment, you won't meet a lot of Aquarians who are New-Age Hippie types, and you certainly won't meet many Leo's (the opposite sign, where Uranus would be in its detriment) who don't like individualism, spontaneity, surprises, or any of the other Uranian characteristics.
Many modern astrologers think that the original model of the Zodiac has to be amended to fit the newly discovered objects in the Solar System. Some of them are still arguing with one another about where Uranus should be exalted.
Many have decided to throw out the whole concept of exaltation in order to fit everything into their favorite "rulership" scheme. It may be easier to say that Uranus is exalted in the entire Zodiac, because in this day and age, people are more concerned about doing "their own thing" than they are about attaining status by traditional means. Non-conformity is no longer a topic of conversation; for everyone who does not wear a uniform as part of their job, it's a part of everyday life.
A prominent Uranus can indicate a person who is unique, surprising and innovative; possibly one who's religious or political ideas are nothing short of revolutionary.
People who are born when Uranus is at its highest point in the sky either have unusual (at least from the standpoint of conventional) or erratic careers; such as those in show business or some other trade that is dependent on individuality or innovation.
Uranus is almost the opposite of Saturn in nature; it does things impulsively and suddenly, generally in a surprising way. People who have Uranus in their rising signs may have had births that required some kind of intervention.
Uranus can also act as a trickster, popping up with the wrong thing to say at an inappropriate time; it can certainly "throw a monkey-wrench" into plans and expectations.
In relationships, Uranus can indicate love at first sight, elopement or indicate that one is part of an untraditional couple. When Uranus is powerful, you'll find a person or situation which is living proof that you can't solve new problems with old thinking.
Those who have a powerful combination of Uranus and Venus often have short-lived relationships, while wanting nothing more than to settle down, or else they have relationships with someone from a vastly different background, or with someone who is of an unusual or unsteady nature.