Going counter-clockwise around the horoscope wheel, the seventh house is the first one that is above the horizon. The lower hemisphere of the wheel, below the horizon, indicates the inner life, and the houses 1-6 are entirely personal in nature. Someone with many planets in the lower (northern) hemisphere isn’t compelled to interact with others to find meaning and sustenance, they are more able to nourish themselves from the wellspring of inner resources.
The houses above the horizon (southern hemisphere) indicate the “other”, as in people that go beyond the self. The seventh house is literally the other person in any intimate or close relationship, those with whom the individual forms close bonds. Primarily, this is the romantic partner, or spouse with whom the person has a committed relationship. There is a connection between the 5th house and the 7th house in that the 5th house indicates (among other things) romance and sex for pleasure, but when the romance turns serious and the sex acquires deeper intimacy and meaning, the signification shifts to the 7th house.
Another kind of partnership that is also signified by the 7th house is the business partnership. A business partner in this sense is someone with whom your destiny is intertwined, just as it would be with a romantic partner or spouse. When you break with a business partner, it’s just like a divorce–there are assets to be apportioned, agreements to be negotiated. There may be a sense of disappointment or even betrayal. In other words, it is not simply a work relationship. It is a full-fledged deeply emotional connection.
The sign on the cusp of the 7th house indicates the kind of person you are likely to attract as a partner, and/or the kind of partnership you will likely form. Cancer on the cusp of the 7th? The partner or partnership is above all about nurturing and being nurtured. Sagittarius on the cusp? The partnership is an adventure! You will want to explore the world together, through mental or physical travel.
Planets in the 7th house function similarly. If you have Saturn in the 7th house, the partner or partnership is strongly colored by a Saturnian influence. This could show up in one of many different ways in the life. You might marry someone who is much older or much younger (Saturn has to do with age, manifesting here in a more-than-usual age difference), you might avoid relationships all together (Saturn signifies isolation and self-sufficiency), you might marry someone who is some sort of authority figure, or is a parental figure in the relationship, and so on. If Uranus is in the 7th house, relationships might come and go, never quite lasting. Or the relationship might be erratic and have lots of ups and downs, or the relationship might be a long-distance one, etc. You get the idea.
I once gave a consultation to a woman who had Uranus and Pluto in the 7th house. She had married someone despite vehement opposition from her family. The person she married was extremely independent minded and was away for long periods of time, traveling for many months at a time, fairly often. Her husband was very much his own person, she had lots of freedom in the marriage, there was a huge difference in their respective economic status (extremely wealthy to barely earning) – the marriage was about as unusual and different from the norm as it gets, all very Uranian. Also, in her social circles and the society in general, the kind of relationship she had with her husband, the nature of her marriage, and the furious opposition to it was all quite Plutonian.
Since close romantic relationships and marriage are the bedrock of life for most people, it is important to consider the full gamut of factors that go into this. Which means not only do you look at the sign on the 7th house cusp and the planets in the house, but you also want to look at the sign, house, and aspects of the ruler of the 7th house cusp sign, as well as the sign, house, and aspects of Venus. The ruler of the 7th house is the planet that carries relationship influences that are particular to your horoscope, while Venus is the general significator of relationships for everyone.
The sign that Venus is in will tell you a lot about how the person approaches relationships in general. Venus in Capricorn, for instance, makes a person extremely dependable and in turn, they want their mate to be dependable and reliable. Venus in Sagittarius, by contrast, is a free spirit–she would want a lot of space and freedom in her relationships, and she will want to have fun and adventure with her mate. No sitting around in the house for too long.
You want to analyze the house position of Venus as well. If Venus is in the 5th house, say, then you want to have fun in the relationship, and there is an element of playfulness in everyday interaction. If Venus is in the 10th, the mutual support of each other’s career and social standing takes prominence.
Lastly, the aspects of Venus. If Venus is aspecting Pluto, for instance, there will be deep emotional intensity in the relationship, as well as one or more of the Plutonian qualities of extreme behavior, transformation and regeneration, loyalty, etc. If Venus is aspecting Neptune, the relationship will be colored by Neptunian influences: blind trust, putting the partner on a pedestal, possible deception, a partner who is highly spiritually inclined, a disinclination to marry at all because no human can possibly meet the lofty expectation of the individual.
As with Venus, so with the 7th house ruler. Look at its sign, house, and aspects.
You can see that a full analysis of the 7th house takes into consideration several factors. I have gone into more detail here than for any of the other houses because the 7th house of relationships, more than any other house, is the bedrock of life. But other houses need to be analyzed in a similar way to get the complete picture of who you are, and how you can best live your life. Such complete coverage of the full horoscope is impossible to achieve in the typical one-hour consultation with an astrologer. You need to do it for yourself, continually as your life unfolds. Get your horoscope, and get going – you owe it to yourself.