The Year of the Fire Rooster – Chinese New Year 2017
How do you say Happy New Year in Chinese? There are many languages spoken in China, but the two most common are Mandarin (mainland China) and Cantonese (Hong Kong). Here is how to say Happy New Year:
New Year Happiness in Mandarin: 新年快乐 / 新年快樂 Xin Nian Kuai Le (/sshin-nyen kwhy-ler/)
Happiness and prosperity in Cantonese: 恭喜发财 / 恭喜發財 Gongxi Facai (/gong-hey faa-chwhy/)
This year, Chinese New Year falls on Saturday, January 28, 2017, and runs until February 2. The date of the first day of Chinese New Year is different each year. It can be anywhere from January 21 to February 20. The date is determined by the Chinese Lunar calendar. This calendar is based on the phases of the moon. The months begin on the New Moon and have a full moon on the 15th day of the month. Since the new moon comes every 29 ½ days, the months of the Chinese calendar can be either 29 or 30 days long.
Each year has a corresponding zodiac animal. There are 12 animals in all – rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig – each with their particular characteristics. If you are born in a certain animal year, you are said to have that animal’s characteristics, too. 2017 is the Year of the Rooster. The last Rooster year was in 2005.
In addition to the corresponding animal, every 2 years has a different corresponding ‘cosmic element.’ There are 5 cosmic elements in all. They are: wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. That year’s animal is paired with that year’s cosmic element. The combination of 2017’s animal and cosmic element is the Year of the Fire Rooster. The last time there was a Fire Rooster year was in 1957. Unfortunately, it is said that it is a bad luck year for you if it is your zodiac animal year, so if you are born in the Year of the Rooster, then you’d better be extra careful in your affairs, particularly in money, health, love, and personal safety.
People born in a fire rooster year are very strong-willed, and make excellent leaders. They are trustworthy and responsible, courageous, talented, and self-assured. They are also great at managing financial matters, both personal and professional.
Chinese New Year is many centuries old, and is rich in customs and celebration. Homes are decorated in red and gold banners and red lanterns – red and gold are the traditional colors of happiness and prosperity. Red also symbolizes good luck, and wards off evil spirits. People also give each other red envelopes containing money. These are usually given to the unmarried, usually to children. During large celebrations, you can often see a lion dance performed, and hear the sound of firecrackers. Food and family get-togethers are also a big part of the celebration. Since Chinese culture is so ancient, there are many more cultural aspects of Chinese New Year celebrations.