Zodiac Animals


12 Zociac animals 干支  eto, kanshi

Dragon : tatsu 辰 
Dragon and Snake : tatsumi 辰巳

Grace Kelly (1928), Napoleon III (1808), and Deng Xiaoping (1904) were Dragon born.


2012 is the year of the Water Dragon

mizunoe tatsu, jinshin  
壬辰 みずのえたつ / じんしん


Jikkan Junishi (literally 10 stems and 12 branches)
refers to the Chinese zodiac symbols, also called eto in Japanese. The 10 heavenly stems referred yin-yang principles and the elements of wood, fire, earth, metal and water.

The 12 earthly branches included 12 animals:
rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse,
sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and wild boar.

© http://asnic.utexas.edu/asnic/countries/china/czod.html


Full of vitality and enthusiasm, the Dragon is a popular individual even with the reputation of being foolhardy and a "big mouth" at times. You are intelligent, gifted, and a perfectionist but these qualities make you unduly demanding on others. You would be well-suited to be an artist, priest, or politician.

Born in 1916, 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012, 2024, 2036, 2048, 2060.

Read more about the other Zodiac Animals
©  Chinatoday.com


In China, instead of asking your age, people may ask you questions like "what do you belong to?" Don't ever think that you are expected to answer like "I belong to the US". You are supposed to belong to one of twelve animals! (Those are mouse, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig.) It is not that weird as you have to follow the order of a mouse or a tiger. That is Chinese Zodiac. The Chinese Zodiac is based on a twelve year cycle --- each year being represented by an animal that imparts distinct characteristics to its year.

Many Chinese believe that the year of a person's birth is the primary factor in determining that person's personality traits, physical and mental attributes and degree of success and happiness throughout his lifetime. Actually, in China, this is just an alternative way to say how old you are.

Chinese astrology has a history of more than 3,000 years. Ancient Chinese people invented the 10 Heavenly Stems and 12 Earthly Branches for chronological purposes. However, since most people were illiterate, 12 animals were designated to symbolize the 12 Earthly Branches in order to be better remembered. These lucky animals are rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig successively.

According to legend, many years ago Buddha summoned all the animals to a meeting in which he would designate the first 12 animals arriving,to be signs of a year respectively. On the night before the departure, cat notified his pal, rat, and they agreed that the one waking up first the next morning must awake the other so they can depart for the meeting together. However, rat broke his promise and arrived for the meeting alone. Then, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig arrived one after the other. When cat woke up and hurried there, the meeting was over. It is said that is the reason why the cat kills rats.

Chinese astrology argues that one's personality profile can be revealed form one's birth time. However, Chinese zodiac is based on the year rather than in the month as in the western system. In China everybody knows which animal sign he or she is born under. Do you want to know which animal you are born under and check out your astrological path according to Chinese Zodiac?

The Chinese Calendar

Chinese New Year is the main holiday of the year for more than one quarter of the world's population. Although the People's Republic of China uses the Gregorian calendar for civil purposes, a special Chinese calendar is used for determining festivals. Various Chinese communities around the world also use this calendar. At right, a large dragon lantern glows at a festival for Chinese New Year at the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial. Taipei, Taiwan.

The beginnings of the Chinese calendar can be traced back to the 14th century B.C.E. Legend has it that the Emperor Huangdi invented the calendar in 2637 B.C.E.

The Chinese calendar is based on exact astronomical observations of the longitude of the sun and the phases of the moon. This means that principles of modern science have had an impact on the Chinese calendar.

2000-year-old Almanac Found in Suizhou Hubei Province
- Chongzhen Lishu
- Shoushi Calendar
- Chinese Lunar Calendar
- Tibetan Wuhou Calendar
-- a Unique Ethnic Minority Calendar

- Ten-month Solar Calendar of Yi Ethnic Minority
- Origins of the Solar Calendar
- Chuxiong Solar Calendar Cultural Park -- Symbol of the Yi Civilization

- Calendarian Achivements
- Calendar Making in Ancient China
- Solar Terms
- Chinese Calendar vs. Western Calendar
- Taichu Calendar
- Daming Calendar
- Dayan Calenar

Read a lot more here
© China Style


The Lunar Calendar in Japan
By Steve Renshaw and Saori Ihara

KANSHI (or ETO 干支) = Zodiac Calendar
JUUNI SHI (or JUNI SHI 十二支) = 12 Zodiac Animals

By Mark Schumacher

Dragon and its Buddhist Patron, - Fugen Bosatsu -


Nakayugawa papermachee doll
会津中湯川土人形 - by Aoyagi san 青柳守彦

. Catfish, Dragon and Daruma .

Read a short introduction by Gabi Greve

. tatsubina 辰雛 Dragon hina dolls .

. Zodiac Animals and Japanese Folk Toys .



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