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U+263F, ☿

Miscellaneous Symbols
Manuscript variant of the symbol
Classical variant of the symbol



A simple caduceus () of the Greek god Hermes (and his Roman equivalent Mercury), as seen with a much longer staff in stylized representations of that god e.g. on pottery. The cross was added in the 16th century to Christianize the symbol of a pagan god.[1]


  1. (astronomy, astrology) Mercury.
  2. (alchemy, archaic) mercury, quicksilver.
  3. (rare) Wednesday.
    Refers to the Latin phrase dies Mercurii, which literally means "Mercury's day".
  4. (botany, of a flower, obsolete) perfect, hermaphrodite.
    (Replaced by .)
    • 1961 August 17, New Scientist, volume 11, number 248 (in English), Reed Business Information, →ISSN, page 413:
      In his Mantissa Plantarum (1767) and Mantissa Plantarum altera (1771), [Linnaeus] regularly used ♂, ♀ and for male, female and hermaphrodite flowers respectively.
  5. (gender) intersex.
    • 2012, Olga B. A. van den Akker, Reproductive Health Psychology (in English), John Wiley & Sons, →ISBN, page 40:
      The genders are typically represented by symbols derived from the planets. The female (Venus) and male (Mars) symbols (shown below) are commonly known and used.
      Venus Mars Mercury
      As not everyone believes that they fit into either the male or female gender role regardless of their biological genetic sex, they tend to refer to themselves as the third category, intersex, intergender or transgender (see Mercury symbol above).
  6. (entomology) worker.
    • 1903, C. T. Bingham, Hymenoptera.—Vol. II. Ants and Cuckoo-wasps (The Fauna of British India, Including Ceylon and Burma) (in English), London: Taylor and Francis, page v:
      Ants like the honey-bees and one section of the wasps, are social insects with, in any well-established nest or community, three distinct forms—the perfect and fertile female () the male (), and the so-called neuter or worker (), which is merely an undeveloped female.
  7. (astrology) mutable zodiacal modality.
    Synonym: 🜳
Use of ☿ for Wednesday, near the bottom of the calendar dial of this 13th-century clock tower. Note that in form it resembles ♉︎ Taurus.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Planetary symbols
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Gender and sexuality symbols
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  1. ^ Jones, Alexander (1999) Astronomical Papyri from Oxyrhynchus, →ISBN, pages 62–63