Chinese Zodiac

Chinese zodiac (生肖shēngxiào) is based on a twelve year cycle, with each year of the lunar calendar in the cycle associated with an animal sign. 2018 is the year of Earth Dog starting from February 16, 2018 (Chinese Spring Festival) and lasting to February 04, 2019.

The 12 animals in order are: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep (Goat), Monkey, Rooster, Dog, Pig.

Chinese Horoscope

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  • Pig

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12 Chinese Zodiac Animal Signs and Years Chart

Chinese Zodiac sign is based on one’s year of birth according to the Chinese lunar calendar. People under different signs have unique characters and fortune. You can find out your animal signs quickly according to the zodiac years chart below and click the animal sign to view more information about the sign. 
 
Note: If your birthday falls during 21 January and February 20 in Gregorian date, you may belong to the zodiac sign of the last year. 
Chinese Zodiac Years Chart
→ How to calculate your Chinese zodiac sign?

1912, 1972 (Water Rat)
1924, 1984 (Wood Rat)
1936, 1996 (Fire Rat)
1948, 2008 (Earth Rat)
1960, 2020 (Metal Rat)

1913, 1973 (Water Ox)
1925, 1985 (Wood Ox)
1937, 1997 (Fire Ox)
1949, 2009 (Earth Ox)
1961, 2021 (Metal Ox)

1914, 1974 (Wood Tiger)
1926, 1986 (Fire Tiger)
1938, 1998 (Earth Tiger)
1950, 2010 (Metal Tiger)
1962, 2022 (Water Tiger)

1915, 1975 (Wood Rabbit)
1927, 1987 (Fire Rabbit)
1939, 1999 (Earth Rabbit)
1951, 2011 (Metal Rabbit)
1963, 2023 (Water Rabbit)

1916, 1976 (Fire Dragon)
1928, 1988 (Earth Dragon)
1940, 2000 (Metal Dragon)
1952, 2012 (Water Dragon)
1964, 2024 (Wood Dragon)

1917, 1977 (Fire Snake)
1929, 1989 (Earth Snake)
1941, 2001 (Metal Snake)
1953, 2013 (Water Snake)
1965, 2025 (Wood Snake)

1918, 1978 (Earth Horse)
1930, 1990 (Metal Horse)
1942, 2002 (Water Horse)
1954, 2014 (Wood Horse)
1966, 2026 (Fire Horse)

1919, 1979 (Earth Sheep)
1931, 1991 (Metal Sheep)
1943, 2003 (Water Sheep)
1955, 2015 (Wood Sheep)
1967, 2027 (Fire Sheep)

1920, 1980 (Metal Monkey)
1932, 1992 (Water Monkey)
1944, 2004 (Wood Monkey)
1956, 2016 (Fire Monkey)
1968, 2028 (Earth Monkey)

1921, 1981 (Metal Rooster)
1933, 1993 (Water Rooster)
1945, 2005 (Wood Rooster)
1957, 2017 (Fire Rooster)
1969, 2029 (Earth Rooster)

1922, 1982 (Water Dog)
1934, 1994 (Wood Dog)
1946, 1906 (Fire Dog)
1958, 2018 (Earth Dog)
1970, 2030 (Metal Dog)

1923, 1983 (Water Pig)
1935, 1995 (Wood Pig)
1947, 2007 (Fire Pig)
1959, 2019 (Earth Pig)
1971, 2031 (Metal Pig)

Chinese Zodiac Compatibility

Different people born under each animal sign have different characters. Ancient Chinese people calculated the compatibility for love between animals based on this. Nowadays, many people are keen on checking compatibilities to gain guidance in life, for love or for marriage although there is no scientific evidence. Test the compatibility between you and your partner by using our tool below or find through the chart by clicking Chinese Zodiac Compatibility.

Select your animal sign to get to know your compatible and incompatible signs:

Chinese Zodiac Good Luck Charms

Once wearing a lucky charm, one (especially those clash with Tai Sui in the year) will be blessed with good luck in the year. Different stones have different effects on your fortune. For example, the red agate could exorcise evil spirits in Ben Ming Nian (One's Zodiac Year) and Daily Life; The rose quartz and amethyst could help to attract love. Yellow citrine is used to attract wealth. Find and buy your favorite lucky zodiac and protection charms now to enjoy a good year.

→ Lucky Charms for Pigs in 2019

Click to show more

Origin and Story of Chinese Zodiac

It's a mystery that which country created the zodiac first. According to the historical literature, the 12 animals in China used today including the animal selection and their orders were originated in the Han Dynasty (202 BC – 220 AD). The order of the animals is most explained with a folk-tale about how the animals were summoned to heaven by the Jade Emperor who ruled the heavens of China.

There are many different versions of stories and folklores related to Chinese zodiac. The most popular one is about the race between the animals. Legend said the Jade Emperor held a race and asked all the animals to participate. The first 12 could be given a place in the calendar. Although the Rat is small, it won the first place by riding on the Ox’s back. The pig got the last one because of stopping to eat. View more Chinese Zodiac Stories.

12 Zodiac Signs and Time (Shichen)

"Shichen" is a timing unit in ancient China and an old Chinese way of dividing a day. Based on the time of sun rise, the traditional Chinese people divided a day which has 24 hours into 12 segments. These segments with each having two hours are called Shichen. Each two-hour period (one Shichen) is given the name of one of the 12 Earthly Branches.

By observing life characters of animals in different time periods, the Chinese people linked each Shichen with one of the twelve Chinese zodiac animals. Following are connections between 12 animals and Shichen:
Animal Shichen Time Period Animal Features during the Period
Rat Zi (子) 23:00-01:00 Rats are most active during this period in seeking food.
Ox Chou (丑) 01:00-03:00 Oxen ruminate slowly and leisurely.
Tiger Yin (寅) 03:00-05:00 Tigers are most ferocious and hurt prey more.
Rabbit Mao (卯) 05:00-07:00 The jade rabbit on the moon is busy pounding medicinal herb according to the tale.
Dragon Chen (辰) 07:00-09:00 Dragons are hovering in the sky to give rainfall.
Snake Si (巳) 09:00-11:00 Snakes start to leave their caves.
Horse Wu (午) 11:00-13:00 The sun is overhead. Other animals are lying down for a rest, while Horses are still standing.
Sheep (Goat) Wei (未) 13:00-15:00 Sheep(Goats) eat grass and urinate frequently.
Monkey Shen (申) 15:00-17:00 Monkeys are screeching and most lively.
Rooster You (酉) 17:00-19:00 Roosters return to their coops as it is getting dark.
Dog Xu (戌) 19:00-21:00 Dogs are most alert and begin to do their duty to guard houses.
Pig Hai (亥) 21:00-23:00 Pigs are sleeping soundly and growing fast.

What are symbolic meanings of Chinese Zodiac signs?

Chinese Zodiac plays an important role in Chinese folk culture. Each animal has symbolic meanings. The 12 animals are divided into six pairs. In each pair the two animals are complementary and couldn’t be separated based on their attributes and characteristics. 
 
Rat and Ox: Rat is a symbol of wisdom while Ox a symbol of diligence.
Tiger and Rabbit: Tiger is a symbol of valor and vigor while Rabbit symbolizes prudence. 
Dragon and Snake: Dragon is a symbol of strength and inflexibility while Snake symbolizes flexibility.
Horse and Sheep: Horse is a symbol of persistence and marching forward with indomitable will while Sheep is a symbol of peace. 
Monkey and Rooster: Monkey is a symbol of flexibility while Rooster, which crows every morning, is a symbol of constancy. 
Dog and Pig: Dog is a symbol of loyalty while Pig is considered amiable.

→ View more about Symbolic Meanings of Chinese Zodiac Signs

Why did the Chinese zodiac animals fix the number twelve?

According to the research, all agreed that the reason why Chinese zodiac animals fixed to 12 ones is greatly related to the traditional Chinese astronomy and calendar. The ancient people observed the phases of the moon and found that there is 12-times full moon in a year. So, they divided twelve months in a year and 12 two-hour periods in a day as they regard 12 as the number given under the will of Heaven. Therefore, the twelve Earthly Branches and the twelve zodiac animals appeared afterwards.

Why choose the present twelve animals not others?

The chosen of 12 animals are greatly related to Chinese people’s daily and social life. If you analyze these animals carefully, you can find that they can be divided into three categories:

The first group is Chinese six domestic animals: horse, ox, goat, pig, dog and chicken. They are raised and trained for economic and other purposes playing important roles in Chinese agriculture. In people’s traditional view, a family will have a flourishing population and live happily if their domestic animals are all thriving. When the Chinese spring festival comes, people always wish their domestic animals thrive in the coming year. So, due to their importance, these six animals must be chosen in the 12 animals.

The second group is wild animals that are well known by the people and closely related to people’s life. They are tiger, rabbit, monkey, rat and snake. Among them, tiger and snake are feared, rat is detested, and rabbit and monkey are loved by the people. These animals are commonly seen in people’s life and easily remembered and chosen into the 12 animals.

The last group includes one animal - dragon, the traditional mascot of Chinese people. It is the only fictitious animal in 12 ones. Chinese people think they are descendents of the dragon and have a special emotion with it. It is a deified animal symbolizing auspicious, omnipotent ability and the loftiest power. So, dragon is indispensable.

Why is Chinese zodiac so Important to the Chinese?

As an important part of the traditional Chinese Culture, the Chinese Zodiac culture has long been recognized, accepted, taken by consensus and penetrated into the daily lives of the Chinese people. Everyone, from the date of birth, has his unique animal sign accompanying him with the life long time. It is the birth symbol and mascot with different symbolic meanings for each one affecting their behaviors, characters and destiny. People show their strong belief in fortune and luck through the animal signs. As each animal sign has unique personality traits, the Chinese people like to predict people’s relations and more according to this. For example, when finding their mates, Chinese people hope to find the person with the animal sign that compatible with him best. Also the zodiac provides guidance on how people live their lives. For example, according to Chinese astrology, in different animal years, people under different signs should pay attention to different things in order to go smoothly in the year. All in all, the Chinese zodiac is an important component of China's ancient culture, reflecting the rich psychology of the Chinese people vividly.

Zodiac Signs of Different Countries

Chinese zodiac culture, the gem and an important component of Chinese culture has deeply penetrated in people’s daily life in many aspects. It does not only exist in China, but also other countries in the world. However, the signs in different countries are different. Check the following table to get zodiac equivalents in other counties to Chinese zodiac signs.

Country Zodiac Signs
China, Korea Rat Ox Tiger Rabbit Dragon Snake Horse Sheep Monkey Rooster Dog Pig
Japan Rat Ox Tiger Rabbit Dragon Snake Horse Sheep Monkey Rooster Dog Boar
Vietnam Rat Buffalo Tiger Cat Dragon Snake Horse Goat Monkey Rooster Dog Pig
Thailand Rat Ox Tiger Rabbit Python/ Large Snake Snake Horse Goat Monkey Chicken Dog Pig (Elephant in Northern Thailand)
Egypt
(Traditional)
Nile Amon-Ra Mutual Geb Osiris Isis Thoth Horus Anubis Seth Bastet Sekhmet
Egypt (Pharaoh’s) Thoth Horus Wadjet Sekhmet Sphinx Shu Isis Osiris Amun-Ra Hathor Phoenix Anubis
Myanmar (Burma) Garuda (mythical bird) Tiger Lion Elephant (with tusks) Elephant (no tusks) Rat Guinea Pig Dragon        
Western Countries Aries Taurus Gemini Cancer Leo Virgo Libra Scorpio Sagittarius Capricorn Aquarius Pisces

Interesting Zodiac Articles

Chinese Zodiac Pictures

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Chinese Calendar

SuMoTuWeThFrSa
28
二十/20
29
廿一/21
30
廿二/22
31
廿三/23
1
廿四/24
2
廿五/25
3
廿六/26
4
廿七/27
5
廿八/28
6
廿九/29
7
三十/30
十月 (Oct)
8
初一/1
9
初二/2
10
初三/3
11
初四/4
12
初五/5
13
初六/6
14
初七/7
15
初八/8
16
初九/9
17
初十/10
18
十一/11
19
十二/12
20
十三/13
21
十四/14
22
十五/15
23
十六/16
24
十七/17
25
十八/18
26
十九/19
27
二十/20
28
廿一/21
29
廿二/22
30
廿三/23
1
廿四/24

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