Chinese Zodiac Year



In Chinese astrology, there is concept of defining one’s fortune called as Four Pillars of destiny. These four pillars are hour, day, month and year. Out of these four we are going to learn about the last one that is “year”. Chinese zodiac year can tell us about person’s relationship with his parents, siblings, old people, relatives and outer world.

There are twelve signs in Chinese astrology. These signs are:

Monkey, Rooster, Dog, Pig, Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep

Chinese zodiac year is made up of two segments which are Heavenly stem and Earthly branches. There are 10 stems and 12 branches.

Chinese Zodiac Year

Chinese astrology revolves around five elements which are metal, wood, water, fire and earth. They also have concept of Yin-Yang which simply means dark and light or it can be also used to represent two opposite forces. When it is used in naming Chinese zodiac year, Yin is considered as woman and Yang is considered as man. Yin-Yang is combined with all the five elements to give rise to 10 stems of Chinese astrology. They are as follows:

Yin Wood, Yang Wood, Yin Fire, Yang Fire, Yin Earth, Yang Earth, Yin Metal, Yang Metal, Yin Water, Yang Water.

Names of 12 zodiac signs are used to represent 12 branches.

These 10 stems and 12 branches together make 60 unique combinations for Chinese Zodiac year.

We can also find out the age of the person based on his/ her sign, sign of current year and estimated age of that person. Suppose in the year 2011 a person with Rabbit sign is 13 year old, this year is also a year of Rabbit so in next year of Dragon 2012 that person will be one year older.

As we already discussed that year of the particular person represents his/ her relationship with others but month of the person describes adulthood of that person. Thus it has more value in Chinese astrology.

In Chinese astrology they describe their year in weeks rather than months. There are 2 parts of 24 weeks known as solar terms which are equal to month in our calendar. Each zodiac sign is associated with 2 solar terms.

There are 4 seasons in Chinese astrology each consist of 3 months. As each sign is associated with a month, each season will have 3 signs associated with it. Every sign also has a fixed element. Here is the short description on how all the signs, seasons and elements are arranged along with western dates:

Spring season:

Month 1: Tiger

Element: Wood

Date group: 4th February to 5th March

Month 2: Rabbit

Element: Wood

Date group: 6th March to 4th April

Month 3: Dragon

Element: Earth

Date group: 5th April to 4th May


Summer season:

Month 4: Snake

Element: Fire

Date group: 5th May to 5th June

Month 5: Horse

Element: Fire

Date group: 6th June to 6th July

Month 6: Goat

Element: Earth

Date group: 7th July to 6th August


Autumn season:

Month 7: Monkey

Element: Metal

Date group: 7th August to 7th September

Month 8: Rooster

Element: Metal

Date group: 8th September to 7th October

Month 9: Dog

Element: Earth

Date group: 8th October to 6th November

Winter season:

Month 10: Pig

Element: Water

Date group: 7th November to 6th December

Month 11: Rat

Element: Water

Date group: 7th December to 5th January

Month 12: Ox

Element: Earth

Date group: 6th January to 3rd February


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