The Rat in Chinese Zodiac


The Chinese Zodiac cycle begins with the sign of the Rat. Legend has it, that before the world began, the earth and the sky were in confusion and it was the Rat who gnawed and gnawed until he separated the two. As a reward, the Rat was placed first among the animals of the Zodiac.

Another legend tells of how the animals competed for positions in the Zodiac cycle. The Ox was originally the leader, but the Rat, quick and agile, climbed on the Ox's back and jumped down in front to secure the first position.

It was believed that a house Rats choose to inhabit must have an abundance of food in its store-rooms. Thus Rats came to signify prosperity and good luck.

According to Chinese folklore, the third day of the lunar year is The Marriage of the Rat’s Daughter. Grains and salt are sprinkled in the corners and all two-legged inhabitants of the house go to sleep early so as not to disturb the Rats’ festivities.

People born in the Year of the Rat are optimistic, sociable and sentimental. They are honest, they cherish friendship, they adopt to change easily and tend to be popular. They are analytical and imaginative.

Symbols associated with the Rat:

Yin/Yang: yin ( female force) 
Element: water   
Color: black (the color of honor) 
Food: salty   
Direction: north    
Emotion: fear  
Symbol: scales  
Tool: the hammer (tools for building)

You are a Rat if you were born between  the following dates:

Jan. 31, 1900 to Feb. 18, 1901
Feb. 18, 1912 to Feb. 5, 1913 
Feb. 5, 1924 to Jan. 23, 1925
Jan. 24, 1936 to Feb.10, 1937
Feb. 10, 1948 to Jan. 28, 1949
Jan. 28, 1960 to Feb. 14, 1961
Feb. 15, 1972 to Feb. 2, 1973
Feb. 2, 1984 to Feb. 19, 1985
Feb. 19, 1996 to Feb. 6, 1997


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