Let me put some of this in context. The reason for so much interest in astronomy was its importance to agriculture; a good calendar was crucial to knowing the best times to plant and to harvest. As such, astronomy was really more interested in predicting weather than exploring the cosmos. The problem for the ancients was that the seasons seemed to jerk around randomly, and so they kept refining their measurements. When the first-order work (measuring the length of the year precisely) did not yield the predictive resolution they desired, they (rather reasonably) extrapolated to the planets. After all, the motion of the sun obviously controlled the seasons; the motion of the moon controlled female menstruation; surely those other moving objects, the planets, that moved along the same path, had some role to play.
Unfortunately, this gave them a mountain of data, and they tried fitting the data to all sorts of patterns. And with that much data, there were plenty of hypotheses that passed the 5% probability test (even though the ancients didn’t use probability tests). So they kept fiddling and fiddling with the data, trying to come up with a good fit. The result was astrology.
Since this effort seemed so important, they were able to get funding for the observational equipment they needed.