Chinese Astrology is based on the lunar (Moon) calendar. Each Chinese sign lasts more or less for a year, beginning with the New Moon in the Sun Sign of Aquarius. This New Moon can fall at any time between early January and late February. Every twelfth year will be the year of the same animal - the Year of the Dragon begins on 23rd January 2012 and the next Dragon year will not begin until 9th February 2024.
According to Chinese tradition, the signs were given their names by Buddha, five centuries before the birth of Christ. As Buddha lay dying he asked all the animals in the world to come to visit him and say farewell. Only twelve did so, and to thank them he offered each one their own year, so they would become immortal.
The names of the Chinese Astrological Signs (in Chinese Zodiac order) are: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit (or Hare), Dragon, Snake (or Serpent), Horse, Goat (or Sheep), Monkey, Hen (or Rooster), Dog and Pig.
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Find out about your Chinese Sign by clicking the images below and click here to discover what the Chinese Year holds for you