Asteroid Files: Dulcinea

Helios on Dulcinea– Worth. Its such an important concept, and while our own self-worth is incredibly important,  sometimes we tend to get so caught up in what other people think of us that we lose sight of who we really are. What if we get caught up with someone who can’t see us for who we really are, though? What then? Well, this week’s asteroid profile has some experience with that….

The Astronomy– 571 Dulcinea is an R-type asteroid in the main belt. It has an orbital period of 3 years, 271 days and an eccentricity of 0.24.

The Myth– Dulcinea del Toboso is a fictional character who is unseen in Miguel de Cervantes’ novel Don Quixote. Don Quixote describes her appearance in the following terms: “… her name is Dulcinea, her country El Toboso, a village of La Mancha, her rank must be at least that of a princess, since she is my queen and lady, and her beauty superhuman, since all the impossible and fanciful attributes of beauty which the poets apply to their ladies are verified in her; for her hairs are gold, her forehead Elysian fields, her eyebrows rainbows, her eyes suns, her cheeks roses, her lips coral, her teeth pearls, her neck alabaster, her bosom marble, her hands ivory, her fairness snow, and what modesty conceals from sight such, I think and imagine, as rational reflection can only extol, not compare.

She is identified as Aldonza Lorenzo in some parts of the novel, and although she never came to see Don Quixote on his deathbed in the novel, some adaptations, like in Man of La Mancha suggest that Aldonza decides to change her name to Dulcinea to honor Don Quixote after his death when she does visit him because she believes in him. Also, in some adaptions, Aldonza’s occupation varies; she has been portrayed as an innkeeper’s daughter or a prostitute, instead of a farm girl. In the Spanish of the time, Dulcinea means something akin to an overly elegant “sweetness”. In this way, Dulcinea is an entirely fictional person for whom Quixote relentlessly fights. To this day, a reference to someone as one’s “Dulcinea” implies hopeless devotion and love for her, and particularly unrequited love.

Why She MattersDulcinea is a dream that will never be realized in your chart, especially romantically. If ever there was the definition of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl, it would be Dulcinea- Emphasis on Dream. Now, what is the Manic Pixie Dream Girl, you ask? Well, its a really dumb movie trope-  Film critic Nathan Rabin, who coined the term after observing Kirsten Dunst’s character in Elizabethtown said that the MPDG “exists solely in the fevered imaginations of sensitive writer-directors to teach broodingly soulful young men to embrace life and its infinite mysteries and adventures. MPDGs are said to help their men without pursuing their own happiness, and such characters never grow up; thus, their men never grow up. The Manic Pixie Dream Girl is a foil for their man, and thus has no real value on their own, no story worth exploring- their worth is only as a plot device and nothing more.

Now, this should make you mad- its a dumb trope, like the “Born Sexy Yesterday” one, which we will dive into later sometime when I find a minor planet that reflects it. Dulcinea in the natal chart represents an area where you are used like this for another, where you fulfill their needs and help them in some way but get nothing out of it. Dulcinea is where your value as a person is not seen- She is where you are a side character in someone else’s story. Now, this should not depress you or allow you to lose your own sense of self-worth, however…. Dulcinea tends to be activated most powerfully when we want so desperately to break into the lives of another- someone we truly care for but we are unable to make them see our value in some way. That is when she is most powerful and most tragic- and the danger is in losing who you are by only seeing yourself through the eyes of another. You are more than what someone else sees in you, I promise you that.

Additionally, Dulcinea rules the kind of obsessive, one-sided love that causes one person to pursue the other even after they have changed their phone numbers, deactivated their social media, moved to a new country and changed their name entirely. Thats right- Dulcinea can show the stalker type of love, so watch out- But you need to look to her counterpart, 3552 Don Quixote (who you best believe we will cover later), for the full picture on that.

To find out where she shows up in your chart, go to astro.com, put in your birth details and in the extended options, at the bottom of the next page, there will be a menu of additional objects. To the right of that is a blank space where you can enter the number 571, for Dulcinea. Once you have it entered, generate the chart! Where does Dulcinea affect your life? Let us know in the comments below!

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