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The Chinese Zodiac Animals

Updated on July 21, 2016

Unlike the horoscope used in the West,which is based on the months of the year. Chinese zodiac is based on a system of 12 years each of which is named after an animal.

This legend tells us how each year is named after an animal.

A long, long time ago, the emperor of the heavens held a race to decide how the years should be named, The rule is simple, all the animals took part in the competition to see what names the years should have and in which order they should come.

The race was held across the river, in the end it was the rat who won by tricking the ox into giving him a ride on his back. As the ox was about to jump ashore, the rat jumped off the ox's back and won the race.

The other animals arrived in the following order: The rat came first then followed by the Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and lastly, the Pig. The cat came in thirteenth place, which is why it has never been honoured by having a year named after it.

What Chinese Zodiac Animal Are You?

Chinese zodiac signs are determined by the lunar year in which you were born. It is believe that the animal ruling your birth year has a profound influence on your personality and destiny. Chinese people say that your personality depends on the year you are born.

Let's see. . . Just look for The Year You Were Born And Find Out . . .

Year of the Rat

1924, 1936, 1948, 1960

1972, 1984, 1996, 2008

  • Charming and quick-witted, rats love conversation and are good at solving problems.

Year of the Ox

1925, 1937, 1949, 1961

1973, 1985, 1997, 2009

  • Stubborn and reliable, Ox types will work at something until it is completely finished.

Year of the Tiger

1926, 1938, 1950, 1962

1974, 1986, 1998, 2010

  • Brave, self-confident and forceful, Tigers have excellent leadership qualities

Year of the Rabbit

1927, 1939, 1951, 1963

1975, 1987, 1999, 2011

  • Kind and considerate, Hares love to help people and have a natural gift for healing.

Year of the Dragon

1928, 1940, 1952, 1964

1976, 1988, 2000, 2012

  • Brilliant and imaginative, Dragons are usually one step ahead of everyone else.

Year of the Snake

1929, 1941, 1953, 1965

1977, 1989, 2001, 2013

  • Quiet, elegant and clever, Snakes have a reputation for wisdom and good sense.

Year of the Horse

1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014

  • Helpful and trustworthy, Horses love people and have boundless amounts of energy.

Year of the Sheep

1931, 1943, 1955, 1967

1979, 1991, 2003, 2015

  • Thoughtful and artistic, Rams will do well at anything that requires a lot of patience.

Year of the Monkey

1932, 1944, 1956, 1968

1980, 1992, 2004, 2016

  • Lively and unpredictable, the mischievous Monkey is always causing trouble.

Year of the Rooster

1933, 1945, 1957, 1969

1981, 1993, 2005, 2017

  • Stylis and flamboyant, Roosters are perfectionists who live life to the full.

Year of the Dog

1934, 1946, 1958, 1970

1982, 1994, 2006, 2018

  • Friendly, funny and loyal, people born in the year of the Dog make perfect friends.

Year of the Pig

1935, 1947, 1959, 1971

1983, 1995, 2007, 2019

  • Easy-going happy and warm-hearted, Pigs love a quiet, comfortable life.

What Sign Are You?

What comes to your mind about the characteristics that your year of birth says, do they resemble any truth, does it apply to your friends?

One good thing about knowing the zodiac signs is, it serve a useful social function for finding out people's ages. Instead of asking directly how old a person is, people often ask what is his or her Chinese zodiac sign. This would place that person's age within a cycle of 12 years and with a bit of common sense, we can deduce the exact age.

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    • profile image

      China Horoskop 5 years ago

      Nice overview and and really cute graphics. The descriptions about the characteristics could be a little bit longer! That would be nice. I would love to know more about the characteristics of each sign.

      Keep up the good work


    • MM Del Rosario profile image

      MM Del Rosario 5 years ago from NSW, Australia

      @Kruney...thank you for the visit, i hope you have a happy new year....all the best

    • kruney profile image

      Karen R 5 years ago from Richmond, VA

      I love the layout of this page. It looks awesome! Voted up.

    • John Sarkis profile image

      John Sarkis 6 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      I'm a dragon, but a cancer in Western Astrology. I'm probably 80% cancer though, however, the dragon does come out sometimes - one day I traveled to Tahiti on short notice, I've also riden in helicopters, and I just purchased a 60k dollar Jag, which I can afford, but it's going to set me back a bit....

      Great hub!


    • profile image

      Brad 7 years ago

      Year of the Earth Dragon here.. 1988..

      The virgo Dragon.. august 25, 1988..

      Hour of the Metal Pig.. day of the water rat.. month of the metal monkey, and the year of the earth dragon..

    • blake4d profile image

      Blake Ford Hall 7 years ago from Now Rising Out of Phoenix Arizona Earthlings

      Loved your hub, good work.

    • Sa Toya profile image

      Sa Toya 7 years ago from England

      wow Tigers are my favourite I find out I'm a Tiger...tres cool!

    • profile image

      artika369 7 years ago

      good useful zodiacs signs there are

    • rebekahELLE profile image

      rebekahELLE 7 years ago from Tampa Bay

      I love chinese astrology, always interesting. I'm a dragon.

      will be an interesting new year, the year of the tiger! :]

    • johncheung profile image

      johncheung 7 years ago from Hong Kong

      this is the 3rd hub I have finish reading written by you. Love your hub about Chinese stuff.

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 8 years ago

      I love astrology. I don't read enough about it though, to become educated. I basically read my horoscope :)

      I'm a rat.

    • trooper22 profile image

      trooper22 8 years ago from Chicago

      Great hub! Roar! ) I'm a tigger too. (A little Winney the poo referane there) Thanks for the welcome

    • sputnik1156 profile image

      sputnik1156 8 years ago from Jammu India

      a wounderful hub

    • fetch-boy profile image

      fetch-boy 9 years ago

      Wonderful, I'm a dragon lol. Great hub!

    • MM Del Rosario profile image

      MM Del Rosario 9 years ago from NSW, Australia

      Have a great 2008 too, Mr. M. thanks for all your comments.

    • MrMarmalade profile image

      MrMarmalade 9 years ago from Sydney

      I have always wondered why I like dogs and they do not seem to mind me. I am a dog

      Thank you for pointing that out

      Have a great 2008