Almost everyone who knows a little about astrology thinks of Venus as the planet of love and romance because of the mythological association with the goddess of the same name. It does, in fact, have many important attributes concerned with relationships, but is not the sole planet involved in the vast world of romance.
Venus also has many other interesting attributes that need to be pointed out.
Venus is one of the two planets between Earth and the Sun. Hence, it has a faster orbit than the Earth; but its orbit is quite interesting.
The variations in speed cause it to start the next star cycle two degrees less than the previous one. It takes quite a while to complete a round of 760 cycles that bring it back to the same place the round began; 1,215 years. If it sounds a bit like the Mayan calendar, don't be surprised; this is part of the ancient system of "day counts" that was at the core of Mayan astrology.
Venus also has phases, like the Moon. It appears as either morning or evening star; never alone in the night sky long after sunset. Like Mercury, it is hidden by the light of the Sun during some parts of its cycle, and visible at others.
Venus retrogrades 5 times every 8 years, and if one traces the points at which it stops moving (both when it goes retrograde and when it goes direct) carefully, these 5 points make a perfect 5 pointed star on the circle of the Zodiac.
Certain omens and positions of Venus are feared by many. Its relationship with the Sun can be correlated with disasters and the fall of people from positions of power, and when it is unbalanced in the horoscope, it can show dependency on others and difficulty with being assertive enough to make one's way in the world.
Taurus is Venus' Night House, and Libra belongs to Venus by day. It's interesting because Taurus produces many artists and musicians, but it also produces historians and traditionalists in many professions. One does not usually think of these as Venusian traits. Libra produces more bookkeepers and lawyers than you would think. Both are due to the Venusian drive toward harmony, balance and purity.
Venus is in detriment in Aries and Scorpio, meaning that it finds itself uncomfortable in (and sometimes with) these signs, but it is often the kind of discomfort that is felt when overwhelmed with emotion. After all, the Zodiacal houses of relationships for the two Venusian signs are the signs of Mars.
Venus is exalted in Pisces; yet another reason why so many artists and performers are born into this sign. Pisces tends to look up to Venus-ruled people, because beauty and balance is what they strive for.
Venus is fallen in Virgo; Virgos tend to look down on those who are self-indulgent or pursue their fantasies instead of making an effort to contribute something to the world or to others. Not many Taureans or Librans are like that on the inside, but the charm and glamour that they project may seem like they come straight from Venus.
Venus is usually characterized as the "peacemaker" of the Zodiac, and people who have a well-situated Venus in their charts usually stop more fights than they start. There are so many positive characteristics of Venus that it would be impossible to cite them all.
Most people born with Venus in one of its signs, close to the rising degree, or at the highest point in the sky are usually both charming and creative. Venusian people are often known for their smile and their desire to make things right.
They take the truth seriously, which is why Libra is such a good debater while Taurus finds it hard to argue over trifles.
Venus also has negative traits, however; people who lean toward the negative aspects of this planet can be overindulgent, stubborn, manipulative and dogmatic.
Because Venus represents the urge for togetherness, harmony and balance, it is the natural indicator of not only romantic or business relationships, but of friendship as well. It has a lot to do with one's love life; while Mars activates one's drives, Venus provides the attraction and positive feelings.
Venus' position in a horoscope often reveals something about the personal style and taste; this includes everything from clothing and food to furniture and art. Those who exhibit the characteristics of Venus are often noted to have a "good eye for color" or an excellent "ear for music."
Venus has a great deal to do with one's ability to thrive financially. It tends to show how people go about attracting abundance, and how good they are at building the kind of alliances with others that support their well-being and prosperity.