Chinese Zodiac – The Year of the Horse

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The Year of Horse in Chinese Zodiac
Chinese zodiac signs are called 生肖 [sheng xiào]. There are 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac and each animal represents a year, and every 12 years is a cycle. In the old time, Chinese people did not use calendars to date years; instead, they used 12 animals to recognize what year it was.

Zodiac Signs are Valued in the Chinese Society
Today, even though Chinese people follow the Western Calendar on a daily basis, the culture of zodiac signs is still rooted deeply in society. Why? It is because, similar to constellations, zodiac signs are believed to tell people’s personalities and their relationships with one another. For this reason, some Chinese parents believe that a couple with matching zodiac signs would bring good lucks to their children and the whole family. If you are in a relationship with a Chinese person, it is not surprising his or her parents may ask what your zodiac sign is. Some Chinese parents would like to calculate their children’s potential marriage.

The Order of Zodiac Signs
The zodiac begins with the sign of rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog, pig. 2014 is the year of the horse and 2015 will be the year of the sheep. Finally, there are many folk stories about the Chinese zodiac and the most popular one is about how the 12 animals were selected in order.

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Chinese New Year Words

English Meaning Pinyin Chinese Characters
Happy New Year xīn nián hǎo 新年好
zodiac shēng xiào 生肖
may you be as energetic as a dragon and a horse lóng mǎ jīng shén 龙马精神
may you be like a warhorse achieving immediate victory mǎ dào chéng gōng 马到成功
may you be a leading horse ahead of others yī mǎ dāng xiān 一马当先
rat shǔ
cow niú
dragon lóng
snake shé
rat shǔ
monkey hóu
dog gǒu
pig zhū