Deneb Adige: The Swan Queen
Those deathless odalisques of heaven's hareem,
The Stars, unveil: a lonely cloud is roll’d
Past by the wind, as bears an azure stream
A sleeping swan’s white plumage fringed with gold.
Adam Mickiewicz’ Polish Evening Hymn
Deneb Adige is the alpha star of Cygnus and can be found in the tail of the great Swan who glides across the watery section of the heavens known to the ancients as the Sea. Mostly associated with spirituality, creativity and learning, Deneb Adige can be likened to the nature of Venus and Mercury and “gives ingenious nature and a clever intellect that is quick at learning” according to Vivian Robeson in The Fixed Stars and their Constellations in Astrology. Robeson goes on to describe the Cygnus constellation as giving a “contemplative, dreamy, cultured and adaptable nature”. (1) Ebertin in Fixed Stars and Their Interpretation said that Deneb Adige is “favorable for artistic and scientific pursuits which are carried out with the aim of gain,” noting that Deneb Adige fosters the potential to become successful within the creative fields. (2)
We can look to the Lunar Mansion Al Sa’d Al Ahibiya for other attributes given to Deneb Adige as she is found within this mansion and according to Robeson, was known to the ancient Arabic astrologers as “The lucky star of hidden things or hiding places”. Robeson described the Moon in this Mansion as giving “marital happiness, and victory to soldiers” as well as being beneficial for travel, building, and making friends. (3)
It is in the writings of Bernadette Brady that we find deeper mythological associations. Brady identified Deneb Adige as containing the “strength and hostility of the swan” while holding within its symbolism “the mystic, transcendental qualities embodied in shamanistic legends of the creation of the world egg”. According to Brady the Ancient Egyptians viewed this star as “the exit of the birth canal of Nut, the great starry sky goddess” who cyclically rebirthed the sun. (4)
Embodying the grace as well as the fierce and protective qualities of the swan, Deneb Adige wraps you in her wings as she leads you into deep explorations of the imaginal realms. Just as the Sun is born anew into its fullness of illumination through the birth canal of Nut, journeying with Deneb Adige has the potential to illuminate true paths through the integration of spiritual awareness.
Deneb Adige is both of the celestial and the fae realms. Hers are the wild places. She leads us out into the stars and then back down into the realm of Magonia. She parts the veils that obscures the imaginal from our mundane lives. Her paths are labyrinthine as she takes us into her spiritual depths. When you call to her, do it through music, dance, poetry, art, and journeying, for her messages are revealed through metaphor and dream.
I decided to create these talismans at the beginning of 2022, when during a journey I had a chance encounter with the Swan Queen. I had journeyed to Magonia and was led by my guide to a mist covered lake where a drift of swans were swimming. Standing at the edge of the lake I watched as the largest of the swans began to grow and change shape, transforming into an luminescent queenly figure of great stature, clothed in shimmering white. I presented the Queen of the Swans with the gift of a small bouquet of ornately carved gemstone flowers, and humbly asked for her blessing to create this talisman. She acceded, placing in my hand a small pebble-like green jade stone the colour of sea moss. This was her gemstone. When I awakened from my light trance I held the vision of the Deneb Adige - Queen of the Swans talisman in my mind.
The creation of these talismans began with an initial sketch before setting to the task of hand carving the swan from a block of jewellers wax. The process of talisman making is a prayer and a communion with the celestial spirit and therefore I took great care in the formation of these talismans. This was a lengthy and meditative process in offering to Deneb Adige. The finished wax carving was cast in argentium silver; a purer and whiter silver than sterling silver and is less prone to tarnish.
On the heliacal rising of Deneb Adige on 17 Mar 2022 at 4:55am, Brisbane Australia AEST, I made an offering of white lilies, rosemary, basil and lavender, sweet cakes, eggs, honey and beer and prayed to Deneb Adige using the Orphic Hymn to the Stars and petitioned Deneb Adige to aid in clear vision, to grant safe passage into the imaginal realms, to enhance creativity, and bless with charm, grace, and a golden tongue. I then engraved on the back of the jade stones the sigil of Deneb Adige that I created as no previous glyph or sigil has been recorded in the grimoire magical traditions. I passed each jade stone through a suffumigation made of frankincense, rosemary, and lavender and invited Deneb Adige to ensoul the gemstones. On a second election when the Moon conjoined Deneb Adige on the IC I set each jade stone into the talismans, again repeating the ritual.
Deborah Houlding gave the following definition for a heliacal rising star: When the Sun has separated from the star by somewhere between 8-20 degrees of zodiacal longitude the star begins to emerge, briefly, immediately before sunrise - its first brief appearance being known as its heliacal rising. 
The heliacal rise occurs after a period of invisibility that corresponds with the heliacal setting of the star. Houlding stated that the heliacal setting occurs when the star becomes veiled by the Sun: The increasing proximity of the Sun towards the star each day eventually leads to a period of invisibility, during which it is masked by the Sun's light. Its setting is the moment when it is visible for the last time immediately after sunset. 
This period of invisibility was considered to be a span of time in which the star is said to have traveled through the underworld before being born anew.
In mythopoetic terms, when a star appears briefly in the predawn sky after its chthonic journey through the underworld it creates a bridge between the heavens and earth. The star is briefly among us, walking upon the earth at the horizon before making their ascent back into the heavens. Crafting talismans in ritual during this significant time, in which the celestial spirit touches the earth, draws upon an ancient form of magic that predates the medieval tradition.
Completing the working while the Moon conjoined Deneb Adige on the Imum Coeli also deviates from the tradition of medieval astrological magic. The IC was chosen over the Ascendant or Midheaven as it integrates the attributes inherent to the spirit of this star. The IC is found at the bottom of the heavens and relates to hidden and subterraneous places. In this election the Moon was in Pisces applying within a one degree orb to Deneb Adige on the IC. The Moon and Deneb Adige were free from influence of the malefics. Jupiter, the Ascendant ruler is in his domicile of Pisces conjoined Neptune and co-present with the Moon and Deneb Adige in the 4th house.
I have five Deneb Adige talismans available: they are handcrafted and cast in Argentium Silver, set with a jade cabochon, measure 75x41mm (2.9x1.6 inches), and come with a 20” or 24” sterling silver wheat chain. If you would like a longer chain please add a note in your order with your preferred length. You can view the talismans here
I invited astrologer and folklorist Sasha Ravitch to create a rite to accompany the talisman. It will accompany the talisman as a little booklet, and contains a five day long rite that can be performed as a consecration ritual. You can read the full rite below:
Swan Maiden Rite by Sasha Ravitch
We go to the water but we do not go empty handed, for this is an occasion we’ve prepared for for no less than five days. We will not insult the maidens with laziness or false promises, we will be ardent in our commitment to their infinite graces and their beauty. We will not insult the maidens, we will not disgrace their beauty, we will be worthy of their infinite grace. We will be worthy of wearing their many-feathered cloaks. We go to the water but we do not go empty handed, we would never go empty handed, we know how to comport ourselves amongst royalty.
On our first day of swearing fealty to the maidens at the water, the maidens dressed in feathers, the maidens of resplendent light, we will make sure our body is clarified and perfumed, with not one breath of skin unattended to by the urgents and potions of prestige. We will cover ourselves in cool water, submerged if at all possible, with a sprig of basil between our teeth. We will recite aloud to the water, enchanting into the basil:
Mine is a world of gentle bending colors, tendrils bright as shadow, braided into restless wishes. They wrap around your ribs like vipers, gently constricting in a rhapsody of the heart.
Mine is a world where the windows all are mirrors, where you cannot trust your senses, where you cannot eat the food.
Mine is a world where the fruits of Rowan and Elder are guarded by a sentry made of gossamer and violet.
Mine is a world where betrayal is the only sin considered, and the prices paid cost an eternity from whence you can’t return.
We will stand in our wet flesh, glistening like so many feathers, and we will allow the air to dry us in a veil of our propitiation. We will then place the sprig of basil in a crystal glass of water, and we will leave it to rest.
On our second day of swearing fealty to the maidens at the water, the maidens dressed in feathers, the maidens of resplendent light, we will make sure our body is clarified and perfumed, with not one breath of skin unattended to by the urgents and potions of prestige. We will cover ourselves in cool water, submerged if at all possible, with a sprig of lavender between our teeth. We will recite aloud to the water, enchanting into the lavender:
Mine is a world of grandeur and delusion, of many spired-woodlands which traipse across the mountains.
Mine is a world of deluvian lakes and ponds, of lobelia which lead to wells– and I am native to them, I swim through the rivers of velveteen blood.
Mine is a palace under the water, built in bramble in thicket, built on the periphery of caves. Mine is a world made wholly of silk, and all of my sinews ripple supple, many-fruiting waves.
Mine is a world where fire burns halos into the soft tissue between fingers, betwixt toes. Mine is a world where laughter wrought mayhem, where battles are won and true lovers go.
We will stand in our wet flesh, glistening like so many feathers, and we will allow the air to dry us in a veil of our propitiation. We will then place the sprig of lavender in a crystal glass of water, and we will leave it to rest.
On our third day of swearing fealty to the maidens at the water, the maidens dressed in feathers, the maidens of resplendent light, we will make sure our body is clarified and perfumed, with not one breath of skin unattended to by the urgents and potions of prestige. We will cover ourselves in cool water, submerged if at all possible, with a sprig of rosemary between our teeth. We will recite aloud to the water, enchanting into the rosemary:
Mine is a world where the virtues are verisimilitudes, where the heroes climb witch-ladders made of many-spindled vines.
Mine is a world of cortical curiosity, of lilac and of lily, or creepin-on-the-nigh. Mine is a world where our sisters all dance freely, where shrieks and howls and whispers spill and tumult through the night.
Mine is a world of blending and of bendings, of breath captured and controlled, of tongues forever tied. Mine is a world where secrets are a currency, where those who swallow words are the ones considered wise.
Mine is a world of singing underwater, of swallowing the tree-tips, of violet-colored eyes. Mine is a world where the truth is never spoken, but where the greatest consequence is for one who tells a lie.
We will stand in our wet flesh, glistening like so many feathers, and we will allow the air to dry us in a veil of our propitiation. We will then place the sprig of rosemary in a crystal glass of water, and we will leave it to rest.
On our fourth day of swearing fealty to the maidens at the water, the maidens dressed in feathers, the maidens of resplendent light, we will make sure our body is clarified and perfumed, with not one breath of skin unattended to by the urgents and potions of prestige. We will cover ourselves in cool water, submerged if at all possible, with a white rose between our teeth. We will recite aloud to the water, enchanting into the white rose:
Mine is a world of indescribable beauty, where harmony is held as a freshly budding bloom. Mine is a world of cascading fragrant petals, where spider-silk and seduction spin upon a silver-gilded loom.
Mine is a world of inspiration, of ecstasy, where delirium is a pleasure and we delight in fever-dreams.
Mine is a world of alabaster horses, of stags and owls and foxes, of shadows bursting from their seams.
Mine is a world where love is the strongest crucible, where poet’s hearts swing softly from our overwrought and raucous trees.
We will stand in our wet flesh, glistening like so many feathers, and we will allow the air to dry us in a veil of our propitiation. We will then place the white rose in a crystal glass of water, and we will leave it to rest.
On our fifth day of swearing fealty to the maidens at the water, the maidens dressed in feathers, the maidens of resplendent light, we will make sure our body is clarified and perfumed, with not one breath of skin unattended to by the urgents and potions of prestige. We will cover ourselves in cool water, submerged if at all possible, with a lily between our teeth. We will recite aloud to the water, enchanting into the lily:
Mine is a world of coquette-ish couplets of laughter, where rhythm, rhyme, and reason turn tidely by the season.
Mine is a world where rivers run through wilds that turn ever over upside themselves while seeking distant freedoms.
Mine is a world of courts and balls and banquets, of technicolor madness, or droughts of sublime sadness. Mine is the world of artists and their lovers, diviners and their visions, where sights erupt like fountains.
Mine is a world of problem-solving and problem-making, of hearts shivering and quaking, of eyes narrowed in a hiss. Mine is a world in which I will take you, but do not leave my side for I cannot save you if you stray amiss.
Mine is a world of consequence and barter, of overflowing larders, of promises which must be kept. Mine is a world of smokeless fire and of whirlpools, of oceans and of cliffsides, of falling sound asleep.
Come with me to this world of mine, but touch nothing you know not the name of, for names are all that matters in the Elysian halcyon daze.
We will stand in our wet flesh, glistening like so many feathers, and we will allow the air to dry us in a veil of our propitiation. We will then place the lily in a crystal glass of water, and we will leave it to rest.
On the sixth day, once the consecrations of the herbs have been completed, we will dress ourselves in white, natural fabric (cotton, hemp, linen), and perfume ourselves with sweet, clean, floral ungents and oils. We will prepare a small feast of sweet breads, of colorful eggs, of petite jars of honey, of fragrant white flowers, all of which can be nestled in a small, buoyant basket or placed atop a piece of wood which will easily float upon water. We will take our measure with yarn, thread, or string, and wrap it around a plain beeswax candle which should be able to stand in the middle of the basket or wood.
Journey at dusk to a body of water, either river, lake, or ocean, wherein you have spent some time and the spirits of place will great you as friend or kind acquaintance. Bring with you all of the feasting ingredients, as well as vessel containing your consecrated herbs. When you are at the edge of the water, tie the thread in as many knotted loops as possible around the beeswax candle, and place the candle standing within the basket, and light it. Gently push the offerings into the water, wherein they can float into the tide. Hold the herbs and flowers from the vessel all in one hand, and dip their tips into the water, and then gently “wash” your body in the water droplets coating the tips of these plants.
At this time, take your Deneb Adige talisman and “wash” it with the tips of the plants as well, so that you are mutually anointed and know deeply of each other’s “blood”. Now, it is recommended you wear the talisman, and sit where your body is on land, but your feet are in the water. Close your eyes, and invite the visions, somatic sensations, charmed whispers, and preeminent greetings of the Sisters which have chosen to present themselves to you as your particular Swan Maiden allies.
When you have allowed yourself adequate celebration, stand and spin no less than 7 times counter-clockwise, until you feel yourself become dizzy. Steady yourself, and identify a tree nearby which is inviting you toward it. Spin clockwise at least 7 times around this tree, with one leaf from its lowest branch in your mouth. After you have once again steadied yourself, hold onto this leaf as it now belongs to the vessel of plants that have been consecrated.
Upon returning home, dry the consecrated herbs, flowers, and leaf, and once they have been fully dried, powder them by hand via mortar and pestle. Keep the powder in clean, white, natural cloth, and re-fortifying your pact by feeding bits of powder to the talisman, or sprinkling in a bath, when necessary.
- Robson, VE 2005, The fixed stars & constellations in astrology, Astrology Classics, Abingdon, Md, p.42 & 159.
Reinhold Ebertin, Georg Hoffmann & Banks, I 1976, Fixed stars and their interpretation, American Federation Of Astrologers, Inc, Tempe, Arizona.
- Robson, VE 2005, The fixed stars & constellations in astrology, Astrology Classics, Abingdon, Md, p.75
- Brady, B 2008, Star and planet combinations., Wessex Astrologer Ltd, p. 148.
5 & 6. Houlding, D 2012, Glossary of Traditional Astrological Terms -Heliacal rising / setting, www.skyscript.co.uk, viewed 11 January 2022, <http://www.skyscript.co.uk/gl/heliacal.html>.