Chinese Year Of Birth: Your Guide to Zodiac Signs

China is known for its rich and vast tradition, intriguing culture, and fascinating art. From the Great Wall of China and Chinese New Year to Fa Mulan, Monkey King, and even Jackie Chan, there are some specific things that will always depict China. And if there’s one thing that stands out in all Chinese paintings, legends, and fiction, it is the twelve zodiac animals.

Today, the zodiac has become popular all over the world, with people across the globe referring to their Chinese year of birth and their zodiac signs to see how they impact their lives. Read on to learn all about different zodiac animals and what they mean.

What is the Chinese Zodiac?

Chinese Zodiac

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In China, the Chinese zodiac is also known as Shu Xiang or Sheng Xiao. It features 12 animals in a particular order and has been part of China’s culture and belief for over 2,000 years.

These 12 animals represent your year of birth in China and are believed to influence your personality, success, career, compatibility, and fortune. There are interesting stories about how the 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac were selected.

The most popular and well-loved traditional legend about how the Chinese zodiac animals came about involves the Jade Emperor, who was looking for 12 animals to become his palace guards. According to the story, he arranged for a race between all animals who wanted to become His Majesty’s palace guards, and the first 12 were selected.

Personally, the emperor wanted the Ox to win and come first because of the animal’s diligence and honesty. But this didn’t happen, and the Ox came second because the conniving but clever Rat hid on the Ox’s back throughout the race and jumped ahead, claiming the first spot.

The Tiger came third and was named the King of the Forest, followed by the Rabbit, and then the Dragon, who was bestowed the title of Lord of the Sea.

The Snake, Horse, Sheep, and Monkey, followed by the Rooster, claimed the next spots. The Dog was second to the last and was punished for biting the Rabbit during the race. Finally, the Pig was very late to the interview before the race and, unbelievably, even stopped to nap and snack during the race.

There’s another story about the origin of the 12 zodiac animals that states that they are the simplified version of the 28 animals that symbolize the 28 constellations mentioned in Chinese astronomy.

The 12 Chinese Zodiac Signs

In the Chinese year of birth, each year corresponds to one of the 12 animals. Traditionally, your birth year and your zodiac animal will influence the person you become and how you will prosper in different aspects of your life.

Today, even Western countries look into the personality traits of each zodiac animal and use them as a guide in their daily life.

Here are the 12 Chinese zodiac signs and an overview of every animal’s personality.

#1. Rat


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Just like the Rat who piggybacked on the Ox, making it the winner with minimal effort, the people born during the Year of the Rats are clever, almost conniving, and incredibly charming. They’re also extremely curious and can go to extreme lengths and take risks to satisfy their inquisitiveness. Some of the greatest motivations of people born under the Rat years are money, recognition, and success.

#2. Ox


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Remember how the Jade Emperor favored the Ox to win the race? That’s because people born under the year of the Ox are straightforward, diligent, and hardworking. They are considered passionate about what they do and work hard to succeed. However, these people are also seen as too persistent and are often also misinterpreted as stubborn.

#3. Tiger


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People born under this Chinese zodiac are self-reliant and independent. They are unafraid to take risks and will brave any situation. These people are usually sought for their intelligence and for being action-takers, and with the balance of both, they are often set apart as achievers.

#4. Rabbit


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People born during the Rabbit years are well-loved because of their sincerity and overall likability. They don’t like conflicts and often tap into their sensitive side to make everyone happy. These individuals also like to play it safe, so it could be a good idea to be more open to taking risks, or they might miss out on opportunities and regret it later.

#5. Dragon


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No other animal is more Chinese or more powerful than the Dragon. People born under these years who know their sign often consider themselves superior to others, so they can be misinterpreted as arrogant with little to no patience for errors and delays. But these people have unmatched energy and have no tolerance for gossip or hypocrisy.

#6. Snake


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The people under this zodiac animal are deep thinkers and great speakers. They are diligent and funny but can be overconfident at times. These people tend to ignore other people’s thoughts and tend to follow their advice and strategy because, most of the time, they are right.

#7. Horse


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Like their zodiac animal, people born under the Horse years are easygoing, warm, and loved by many. They celebrate their independence and thrive when they do things alone, ensuring they learn and improve after every experience. Although their frankness can be misinterpreted, these people often mean well.

#8. Goat (or Sheep)


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The Goat savors its alone time and is often lost in thoughts. Creative and highly resourceful, these people are passionate about everything beautiful and appreciate art in any form. People born under the year of the Goat are too cautious, and decision-making can be challenging.

#9. Monkey


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As expected from this adorable animal, people born under this zodiac sign are upbeat and appeal to all people, thanks to their humor. Consider these people the life of the party and the people who can find the good in the bad. These energetic people can sometimes lack control and sensitivity when being comical.

#10. Rooster


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Honest, hardworking, and highly self-reliant, people born under the year of the Rooster are known for being self-independent and would take care of things on their own as much as they can. This self-sufficiency makes them rather impatient with others, and they don’t like wasting their time.

#11. Dog


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Like your canine pet, people born under this zodiac animal are fiercely loyal and unafraid of life’s challenges. They are great confidants and have strong friendships. Although they worry too much, people who were born in the year of the Dog are the best friends you can have.

#12. Pig


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People born under this sign are good-mannered, friendly, and approachable. People can easily ask for favors and help from people under this zodiac animal, but this also means they are taken advantage of most of the time. Additionally, they’re too forgiving of others, causing them to be misunderstood as gullible.

The Chinese Zodiac Years Chart

Zodiac Animal Years
Rat 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020, 2032
Ox 1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009, 2021, 2033
Tiger 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010, 2022, 2034
Rabbit 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, 2023, 2035
Dragon 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012, 2024, 2036
Snake 1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013, 2025, 2037
Horse 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014, 2026, 2038
Goat 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015, 2027, 2039
Monkey 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016, 2028, 2040
Rooster 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017, 2029, 2041
Dog 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018, 2030, 2042
Pig 1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007, 2019, 2031, 2043

Diane McGee

Diane enjoys cooking, reading, and writing at her desk. She loves to let her words captivate the world and writes regularly for online publications. Diane also enjoys teaching kids during her free time.

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