THE CHINESE ZODIAC

Once upon a time, a long, long time ago in ancient China, a terrible argument was being had by thirteen animals. Each wanted a year to be named after them, and each demanded that they be first on the list.

Tired of their bickering, the Emperor decided to declare a race of the animals. He told them all to meet him the next day by the river for a swimming race and the order in which they finished would determine the order in which the years were named after them.

The Cat and the Rat, then still very good friends agreed to leave to go to the race together. The Cat, fond of sleep told the Rat to wake her the next morning.

However, the sly Rat snuck out of the house the next day leaving the Cat snoring in her bed. It was not until after the race had been swum that the Cat finally awoke from her sleep and swore vengeance on the Rat for her duplicity. This is a grudge which all cats bear, and from that day forth, cats have forever chased mice and rats for they have still never forgotten the indignity of missing the race!

On the banks of the river, the animals lined up one by one. The rat, seeing that the Ox was there and knowing that she could never outswim the others asked the Ox if she could climb up onto his shoulders for the duration of the race.

The Ox, being most agreeable let the rat climb up between his shoulder blades and together they set off. The Ox, being the strongest and best swimmer soon took the lead. At the last minute, the sly Rat sprung from the Ox’s shoulders and nipped across the finish line to claim her title as first place amongst all the animals.

The Ox came in second, the Tiger third and soon they were followed by the Rabbit, the Dragon, the Snake, the Horse, the Goat, the Monkey, the Rooster, the Dog and finally, puffing away at the end – the Pig.

 

1. Coffee chat about birthdays / star signs. Click to play. 

"I could never have loved a libra". 

THE ANIMALS

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THE RAT 老鼠

Good with money. Resourceful, opportunistic, keen and quick-witted.

1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020

THE OX 牛

Hard-working, reliable, strong and tenacious.

1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009, 2021

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THE TIGER 老虎

Firey, passionate, brave and honest.

1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010, 2022

 THE RABBIT 兔子

Modest, compassionate, humorous and romantic.

1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, 2023

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THE DRAGON 龙

Confident, daring, brave and enthusiastic. 

1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012, 2024

​THE SNAKE 蛇

Intelligent, enigmatic, elegant and observant.

1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013, 2025

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THE HORSE 马

Energetic, family-orientated, dedicated and adventurous.

1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014, 2026

THE GOAT 羊

Creative, sympathetic, head-strong and loving. 

1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015, 2027

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THE MONKEY 猴子

Mischievous, fun-loving, energetic and loving.

1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016, 2028

THE ROOSTER 鸡

Straightforward, decisive, punctual and dedicated. 

1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017, 2029


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THE DOG 狗

Loyal, focused, driven and amicable. 

1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018, 2030

THE PIG 猪

Pleasure-orientated, cheerful, positive and charming. 

1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007, 2019, 2031

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and THE CAT 猫 ...

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Zodiac art by josephine.jayart