The Chinese Zodiac

The Chinese Zodiac, known as Sheng Xiao, is based on a twelve year cycle, each year in that cycle related to an animal sign.

rat ox tiger rabbit dragon snake horse sheepmonkeyroosterdog pig

These animal signs are the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig. It is calculated according to Chinese Lunar Calender. Your date of birth, reveals your Chinese zodiac sign.

Origin

Similar to the ten heavenly stems and twelve earthly branches, animals in Chinese zodiac were also created for counting years as the system that is now universally accepted based on the Christian calendar was as yet non-existent. The selection and order of the animals that influence people’s lives very much was originated in the Han Dynasty (206 – 220) and based upon each animal’s character and living habits.

The old time division was mostly related to number 12: one ji equals 12 years, one year has 12 months, one day has 12 time periods called shi chen. Ancient people observe that there are 12 full moons within one year. So, its origin is associated with astronomy. Each animal sign is usually related with an earthly branch, so the animal years were called zi rabbit, chou ox, yin tiger, mao rabbit, chen dragon, si snack, wu horse, wei sheep, shen monkey, you rooster, xu dog and hai pig.

12 Animal Signs

For a long time there has been a special relationship between humans and the 12 zodiacal animals. It is believed that the years represented by the animals affect the characters of people in the same manner as the sign of zodiac adopted by western civilizations.

12 Zodiac Signs and Time

  1. Rat: 11 p.m. to 1 a.m., named zi shi (time period of zi). This is the time rats actively seek food.
  2. Ox: 1 to 3 a.m., named chou shi (time period of chou). This is the time that oxen ruminate.
  3. Tiger: 3 to 5 a.m., named yin shi (time period of yin). Tigers hunt prey and display their fiercest nature.
  4. Rabbit: 5 to 7 a.m., named mao shi (time period of mao). Based on tales, the jade rabbit on the moon was busy pounding medicinal herb with a pestle.
  5. Dragon: 7 to 9 a.m., named chen shi (time period of Chen). Dragons were said to hover in the sky at that time to give people rainfall.
  6. Snake: 9 to 11 a.m., named si shi (time period of si). Snakes start to leave their burrows.
  7. Horse: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., named wu shi (time period of wu). The day is flourishing with the sun high above. Other animals are lying down for a rest while the unconstrained horse is still vigorous.
  8. Sheep: 1 to 3 p.m., named wei shi (time period of wei). It was said that if sheep ate grass at this time, they would grow stronger.
  9. Monkey: 3 to 5 p.m., named shen shi (time period of shen). Monkeys become lively.
  10. Rooster: 5 to 7 p.m., named you shi (time period of you). Roosters return to their roost as it is dark;
  11. Dog: 7 to 9 p.m., named shu shi (time period of shu). Dogs begin to carry out their duty to guard entrances.
  12. Pig: 9 to 11 p.m., named hai shi (time period of hai). All is quiet and pigs are sleeping soundly.

Chinese zodiac sign and their respective birth year

                       

RAT

COW

TIGER

RABBIT

DRAGON

SNAKE

HORSE

SHEEP

MONKEY

CHICKEN

DOG

PIG

1900
1912
1924
1936
1948
1960
1972
1984
1996
2008

1901
1913
1925
1937
1949
1961
1973
1985
1997
2009

1902
1914
1926
1938
1950
1962
1974
1986
1998
2010

1903
1915
1927
1939
1951
1963
1975
1987
1999
2011

1904
1916
1928
1940
1952
1964
1976
1988
2000
2012

1905
1917
1929
1941
1953
1965
1977
1989
2001
2013

1906
1918
1930
1942
1954
1966
1978
1990
2002
2014

1907
1919
1931
1943
1955
1967
1979
1991
2003
2015

1908
1920
1932
1944
1956
1968
1980
1992
2004
2016

1909
1921
1933
1945
1957
1969
1981
1993
2005
2017

1910
1922
1934
1946
1958
1970
1982
1994
2006
2018

1911
1923
1935
1947
1959
1971
1983
1995
2007
2019

For more information on the characters of persons born under different signs please visit individual zodiac sign post – information given on this site.

With grace and peace,

Vickram Aadityaa

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