History Of The Chinese Zodiac Signs
The Chinese zodiac signs first emerged in the early 5th century B.C. during the Zhan Guo period. Some Chinese astrology experts were only interested in birth dates, while others also looked to the positions of planets and stars to make divination.
Today, they use the Chinese lunar calendar (based on the moon’s orbit) for their predictions and sign allocations. Those born in January or February are somewhat fluid as to which zodiac sign they belong to. This is because the Chinese New Year is slightly different from year to year, and Chinese zodiac signs change from year to year, rather than month to month, as in the Western zodiac.
Chinese Zodiac: Mythology
Folktales took the place of actual history to explain the origins of the Chinese zodiac. Some say it was the Buddha, and others claim it was the Jade Emperor (the first and primary god who invited the animals to his birthday party, but only twelve appeared). This is how the animals were chosen for the zodiac. A lengthier description states that these animals were invited to participate in a race.
The first twelve winners would be honored by a place in the zodiac. Their place in the finishing line would settle Their order in the Chinese zodiac. Some varieties of this story include a feline character deceived by the rat, supposedly his friend. The rat did not wake him up from his nap, and the cat did not win a place in the zodiac. The 12 animals that are of the Chinese zodiac signs are as follows:
The 12 Chinese Zodiac Signs
1. Rat Zodiac
Born year of the Rat: 1900, 1912, 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020
The Chinese zodiac Rat is smart, shrewd, and above all, ambitious. While they know how to socialize and use this skill to control others, they keep their inner lives a closely-held secret. Trust is a difficult thing for the Rat. When it comes to work, anything they can accomplish through the least effort, exerted is the height of their cleverness. The Rat’s fixed element is water.
The Best Chinese compatibility matches for the Rat are the Dragon, Ox, Monkey.
2. Ox Zodiac
Born year of the Ox: 1901, 1913, 1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009, 2021
The Chinese astrology Ox is diligent, long-suffering, and conventional. The side that most people see is very placid and reassuring. The Ox does not pretend to be something he is not. However, underneath the calm waves sits a temper that can be quite destructive when set off. It is never a good idea to tease or torment an Ox, for you will regret it. The Ox’s fixed element is earth.
The Best romantic compatibility matches for the Ox are the Rat, Rooster, Snake.
3. Tiger Zodiac
Born year of the Tiger: 1902, 1914, 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010, 2022
Chinese Tiger signs are natural leaders who do not have a gentle touch. They are domineering and zealous about their goals. The most noticeable trait about Tigers is that they will not stop their relentless pursuits until they are satisfied with the results. The freedom to do and be who they are as essential to a Tiger’s sense of well-being. The Tiger’s fixed element is wood.
The Best Chinese horoscope compatibility matches for the Tiger are the Dog, Horse, Dragon.
Born year of the Rabbit: 1903, 1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, 2023
The Chinese Rabbit sign is elegant, genteel, and gentle toward everyone she meets. This very amiable sign makes them an excellent diplomat in nearly any situation. Rabbits are attracted to beauty and peace, and they go to great lengths to surround themselves with such. They may indulge themselves a bit too much with the finer things of life. The Rabbit’s fixed element is wood.
The Best Chinese love compatibility matches for the Rabbit are the Pig, Dragon, Sheep.
Born year of the Dragon: 1904, 1916, 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012, 2024
The Chinese zodiac Dragon is the luckiest of all the signs according to Chinese tradition. Dragons are autonomous, driven, and risk-takers. In fact, some people blanch at things. Dragons throw themselves into without fear. Most of the time, they pull out a miracle, but they are a little overconfident and get burned once in a great while. Even then, they don’t stay down for long. The Dragon’s fixed element is wood, and the best romantic compatibility matches for the Dragon are the Rat, Pig, or Rabbit.
6. Snake Zodiac
Born year of the Snake: 1905, 1917, 1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013, 2025
Chinese horoscope Snake signs are shrouded in mystery. On the one hand, they are insightful and compelling, while on the other. They are high-strung and venomous when angered. The Snake is meant for great things; it seems that deep down, he knows that. This sign’s enchanting nature gathers quite a following of people willing to assist with whatever the Snake has set his mind to. Just don’t expect the Snake ever to forgive a significant transgression. The Snake’s fixed element is fire.
The Best romantic compatibility matches for the Snake are Rooster, Ox.
7. Horse Zodiac
Born year of the Horse: 1906, 1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014, 2026
The Chinese zodiac sign Horse is a jubilant, social creature that is always in motion. Multitasking is the Horse’s middle name, and risk-taking makes the Horse feel alive. Others may not realize this, but the Horse is quite insightful, and the risks he takes are calculated. Because this understanding is not expressed. Sometimes the friends that the Horse is good at making may lose in the process. The Horse’s fixed element is fire.
The Best Chinese zodiac compatibility matches for the Horse are Dog, Tiger, Sheep.
8. Sheep Zodiac
Born year of the Sheep: 1907, 1919, 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015, 2027
The Chinese Sheep sign is warmhearted and benevolent, almost to a fault. Some may feel smothered by this sign’s need for a mother. Simultaneously, the Goat is anxious about nearly everything and needs as much tender loving care as she gives. Also, the Goat loves nice things and may give overdo it on the luxury. The Ram’s fixed element is earth.
The Best romantic compatibility matches for the Sheep are Pig, Rabbit, Horse.
Born year of the Monkey: 1908, 1920, 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016, 2028
The sly Monkey sign is always scheming the next big thing to achieve his goals. On the surface, the Monkey will act like your best friend, and perhaps he is, but beware. Channel his wily ways for good, and you are in for some fun. The Monkey’s fixed element is metal.
The best Chinese astrology compatibility matches for the Monkey is Rat, Monkey, Dragon.
10. Rooster Zodiac
Born year of the Rooster: 1909,1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017, 2029
The Chinese zodiac Rooster knows exactly how smart and good looking he is, and he has no issue with making sure everyone else knows this, too. Roosters love to be the center of attention, and they don’t care how they gain that attention. That is the reason why people have strong feelings about them, one way or another. If a Rooster counts you as one of his good friends, he will be loyal, helpful, and a great deal of fun. The Rooster’s fixed element is metal.
The best romantic compatibility matches for the Rooster are Snake and Ox.
11. Dog Zodiac
Born year of the Dog: 1910, 1922, 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018, 2030
The Chinese Dog one of the most giving of the zodiac signs. The symbol of this sign fits quite well. Inside, they have suspicious natures and growl at perceived threats, but to those under their protection, they will give their all. Prestige and personal wealth are not at the top of their priority lists, but serving others is. The Dog’s fixed element is earth.
The Best romantic compatibility matches for the Dog are Horse, Tiger, Pig.
12. Pig Zodiac
Born year of the Pig: 1911, 1923, 1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007, 2019, 2031
The Chinese Pigs are the sweethearts of all the signs. These visionaries are gracious, compassionate, and gentle people who will do their utmost to solve conflict to keep the peace. They love to be with people, enjoying nice things such as good food, drink, and music. Unlike some signs, the Pig does not like to keep their good fortune to themselves, as they are quite the philanthropist. The Pig’s fixed element is water.
The best romantic compatibility matches for the Pig are Sheep, Rabbit, Pig.
Chinese Zodiac Trines
There are Four Trines made up of three signs each. Each of the Trines shares common characteristics and tend to get along quite well. Not surprisingly, the Chinese zodiac signs within a Trine are often listed as good romantic matches:
Rat, Dragon, Monkey. These Chinese signs are commanding, passionate, and impulsive. They are intelligent, well-spoken, assertive, and creative. But they are also known to be jealous, pompous, and manipulative.
Ox, Snake, Rooster. These Chinese horoscope signs are stubborn, steadfast, and fastidious. They are said to be shrewd, disciplined, and hard workers. But they can also be haughty, sanctimonious, and petty.
Tiger, Horse, Dog. These Chinese astrology signs are passionate, impulsive, and extroverted. They are said to be self-reliant, enterprising, and inspiring. But they can also be obstinate, oppressive, and combative.
Rabbit, Sheep, Pig. These Chinese zodiac signs are passive, loving caregivers. They are charming, tactful, and romantic. But they can also be self-doubting and an easy mark for con artists.
Chinese Zodiac: Hours of Birth
The Chinese astrology system is set up differently, but for Westerners to understand, a Chinese zodiac sign is assigned every two hours. That way, all twelve signs are represented in a single calendar day. Each sign influences the time of day of that person’s birthday. For example, a person may be born a Monkey, but she was born at 1:15 (13:15) in the afternoon. The Sheep is considered that person’s “Hour” or “Secret” animal, which is not that different in concept from the “Ascendant” sign in the Western zodiac.
1. Rat Hours (23:00 to 1:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person friendlier, better with money, more self-controlled, and restrained. The signs that benefit the most from this are the Rabbit, Horse, Monkey, and Pig.
2. Ox Hours (1:00 to 3:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person more tenacious, dependable, and diligent. The horoscope signs that benefit the most from this are the Tiger, Rabbit, and Sheep.
3. Tiger Hours (3:00 to 5:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person fiercer, more impetuous, and benevolent. The astrology signs that benefit the most from this are the Ox, Snake, or Horse.
4. Rabbit Hours (5:00 to 7:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person charming and conciliatory, while they may also be more cautious about dealing with others. The zodiac signs that benefit the most from this are Rat, Monkey, and Rooster.
5. Dragon Hours (7:00 to 9:00)
This “secret” Chinese animal makes the person more decisive, energetic, and excitable. The signs that benefit the most from this are the Rabbit, Goat, and Dog.
6. Snake Hours (9:00 to 11:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person more visionary, visceral, and wary of others. The Chinese zodiac signs that benefit the most from this are the Rabbit, Sheep, and Pig.
7. Horse Hours (11:00 to 13:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person more energetic, daring, and intrepid. The signs that benefit the most from this are the Snake, Dog, and Pig.
8. Sheep Hours (13:00 to 15:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person more considerate, merciful, and imaginative. The signs that benefit the most from this are the Ox, Snake, and Rooster.
9. Monkey Hours (15:00 to 17:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person more playful, resilient, and inventive when life gets difficult. The astrology signs that benefit the most from this are the Rat, Ox, and Snake.
10. Rooster Hours (17:00 to 19:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person more coordinated, efficient, and competent, especially when given essential tasks. The signs that benefit the most from this are the Tiger, Dragon, and Horse.
11. Dog Hours (19:00 to 21:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person more tolerant, impartial, and reasonable when dealing with people and situations. The signs that benefit the most from this are the Tiger, Dragon, Snake.
12. Pig Hours (21:00 to 23:00)
This “secret” animal makes the person even-tempered, sweet, and generous with others. The signs that benefit the most from this are the Dragon, Snake, and Monkey.
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