Chinese New Year 2010 - Year of the Tiger

Chinese New Year 2010 - Year of the tigerLunar Chinese New Year 2010 - Year of the Tiger 庚寅

The Chinese New Year Festival Starts on February 14th 2010.

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The Chinese New Year Calendar 2010

Unlike western calendars, the lunar Chinese new year calendar has names that are repeated every 60 years.  Within the 'Stem-Branch' system is the shorter cycle of 12 years denoted by animals:

2010 is the Chinese year of the Tiger.  In particular, this is the year of Gēng-yín 庚寅 (Metal Tiger).  Gēng is the seventh of the ten celestial stems and Yín (Tiger) is the third of the twelve terrestrial branches, thus February 14th 2010 marks the year of the Tiger with its association to bravery.

   Rat    Ox   Tiger  Rabbit Dragon  Snake Horse Sheep Monkey Rooster  Dog   Pig
2008 2009  2010  2011   2012  2013  2014  2015   2016     2017    2018 2007

Calculating 'When is Chinese New Year 2010'

The fact that the date of Chinese New Year varies within a lunar month is a clue that it's linked to the new moon.  A rough, and almost infallible guide, is that the Chinese New Year date falls on the second new moon after the winter solstice.  The winter solstice always falls on December 22nd, the next new moon is January 15th, and the second new moon February 14th 2010.

Will and Guy admit that the precise rules for determining 'When is the Chinese New Year date', are far more complex.  For example, one problem with any lunar calendar system is that some years there are 13 new moons.  The Chinese deal with this by slotting in an extra intercalary month.  However, the Chinese have been calculating the New Year for a long time, and 2010 and will be lunar year 4708 in the Chinese calendar system.

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The Chinese New Year Calendar - With Its Associated 12 Animals

The lunar Chinese New Year (CNY) calendar below shows which of 12 animals you are!  Naturally the animal depends on the year in which you were born.  Note: if you were born in January or February you need to check if your birthday was before or after the date of that Chinese New Year. (If it was before this day your animal is the one shown for the previous year).

Rat

1924

1936

1948

1960

1972

1984

1996

2008

Ox

1925

1937

1949

1961

1973

1985

1997

2009

Tiger

1926

1938

1950

1962

1974

1986

1998

2010

Rabbit

1927

1939

1951

1963

1975

1987

1999

2011

Dragon

1928

1940

1952

1964

1976

1988

2000

2012

Snake

1929

1941

1953

1965

1977

1989

2001

2013

Horse

1930

1942

1954

1966

1978

1990

2002

2014

Sheep

1931

1943

1955

1967

1979

1991

2003

2015

Monkey

1932

1944

1956

1968

1980

1992

2004

2016

Rooster

1933

1945

1957

1969

1981

1993

2005

2017

Dog

1934

1946

1958

1970

1982

1994

2006

2018

Pig

1935

1947

1959

1971

1983

1995

2007

2019

60 Year Cycle of the Chinese New Year Calendar

Unlike western calendars, the Chinese calendar has names that are repeated every 60 years.  Within the 'Stem-Branch' system is shorter 'Celestial' cycle of 12 years denoted by animals.  Furthermore, the Chinese believe that people born in a particular year take on the characteristics of the animal associated with that year.

   Rat    Ox   Tiger  Rabbit Dragon Snake Horse Sheep Monkey Rooster  Dog   Pig
2008 2009  2010  2011  2012   2013  2014   2015   2016     2017   2018 2007

Another dimension of the Chinese zodiac is the 5 'Terrestrial' elements of metal, water, wood, fire and earth.

If the year ends in 0 it is Yang Metal.
If the year ends in 1 it is Yin Metal.
If the year ends in 2 it is Yang Water.
If the year ends in 3 it is Yin Water.
If the year ends in 4 it is Yang Wood.
If the year ends in 5 it is Yin Wood.
If the year ends in 6 it is Yang Fire.
If the year ends in 7 it is Yin Fire.
If the year ends in 8 it is Yang Earth.
If the year ends in 9 it is Yin Earth.

Start date for the Chinese New Year Calendar 2013 and following years

The lunar Chinese New Years dates are:
2013 - Feb 10;  2014 - Jan 31;  2015 - Feb 19; 2016 Feb 8th; 2017; Jan 28th.

See more on the Chinese New Year

Dates for Chinese Valentine's Day

'When is the Chinese Valentine's Day in 2010?', is sure to be a mean question in pub quizzes.  So prepared, know the date, and remember the rule, 7th day of the 7th month of the Chinese calendar.

Chinese New Year Masks Chinese New Year Masks 2010

Masks in Chinese culture are part and parcel of the world culture of masks....... 面具 Mianju.  Masks first appeared in China during the Shang and Zhou dynasty some 3,500 years ago. The colourful and exciting celebrations for the Chinese New Year festival last for several days and end with the lantern [Yuanxiao] festival.

See more on Chinese New Year masks.

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Wishing Tree For Chinese New Year 2010Chinese New Year Wishing Tree

A man ties a New Year wish to a "wishing tree" at the Taoist White Cloud Temple, Beijing, on the day of the lunar Chinese New Year.  See picture to the right.

A child in traditional costume takes part in the third day of Chinese New Year festival at the Dongyue temple, Beijing, China.  The Lunar New Year will be celebrated with a week-long holiday.

Chinese New Year 2010 celebrations

Keeping Cool In the Hot Weather the Chinese Way Chinese Keep Cool

People have dinner In a village river in Kaili, Southwest China's Guizhou province on August 9th, 2010.

The continuing high temperatures have driven thousands of city dwellers to the village river every day. They swim, play cards and have dinner in the river.

Chinese New Year Superstitions

There are certain customs and superstitions that many Chinese adhere to during the New Year festival. Will and Guy have researched their top twenty Chinese superstitions for the New Year.  These superstitions may well help westerners to better understand their oriental brothers.Chinese New Year Firework Superstition

  1. Exploding firecrackers on Chinese New Year's Eve is the Chinese way of sending out the old year and welcoming in the new.
  2. On the stroke of midnight, every door and window in the house has to be opened to allow the old year to go out is one superstition.
  3. Many people also abstain from eating meat on the first day of Chinese New Year festival because it is believed that this will ensure a long and happy life.
  4. Some may eat a whole fish which represents togetherness and abundance, or a chicken with its head and feet intact, which symbolizes prosperity.
  5. Any noodles in your bowl should be left uncut, as a sign of long life.
  6. Plants and flowers also play a significant role in symbolizing rebirth and new growth. A home is thought to be lucky if a plant blooms on New Year's Day, as this foretells the start of a prosperous year.
  7. Another Chinese superstition is that the entire house should be cleaned before New Year's Day.
  8. On New Year's Eve, all brooms, brushes, dusters, dust pans and other cleaning equipment are put away.  Sweeping or dusting should not be done on New Year's Day for fear that good fortune will be swept away.
  9. After New Year's Day, the floors may be swept.  Beginning at the door, the dust and rubbish are swept to the middle of theroom, then placed in the corners and not taken or thrown out until the fifth day. At no time should the rubbish in the corners be trampled upon.
  10. In sweeping, there is a superstition that if you sweep the dirt out over the threshold, you will sweep one of the family members away. Also, to sweep the dust and dirt out of your house by the front entrance is to sweep away the good fortune of the family; it must always be swept inwards and then carried out, then no harm will follow.  All dirt and rubbish must be taken out the back door.
  11. All debts had to be paid by this time. Nothing should be lent on this day, as anyone who does so will be lending all the year.
  12. Everyone should refrain from using foul language and bad or unlucky words.  Negative terms and the number 4, sounding like the word for death, are not to be uttered. Death and dying are never mentioned and ghost stories are totally taboo.
  13. References to the past year are also avoided as everything should be turned toward the New Year and a new beginning.
  14. If you cry on New Year's Day, you will cry all through the year.  Therefore, children are tolerated and are not chastised less they cry.
  15. On New Year's Day, one should not wash hair because it would mean that good luck for the New Year could be washed away.
  16. Red clothing is preferred during this festive occasion.  Red is considered a bright, happy colour, sure to bring the wearer a sunny and bright future.  It is believed that appearance and attitude during New Year's sets the tone for the rest of the year.
  17. Children and unmarried friends, as well as close relatives are given little red envelopes with crisp one dollar bills inserted, for good fortune.
  18. The first person one meets and the first words heard are significant as to what the fortunes would be for the entire year.  It is a lucky sign to see or hear songbirds or red-coloured birds or swallows.
  19. It is considered unlucky to greet anyone in their bedroom so that is why everyone, even the sick, should get dressed and sit in the living room.
  20. Do not use knives or scissors on New Year's Day as this may cut off fortune.

Texting is Popular at Chinese New Year

Do you realise that well over 9 billion text messages will be exchanged at the Chinese New Year 2010?

Examples of Chinese ScriptChinese Tiger Symbol

The development of Chinese characters can be dated back over 4,500 years as discovered at Yanghe, Shandong Province in recent years. There are about a dozen pottery wine vessels unearthed, which each have a character. These characters are quite close to the oracle inscriptions carved by the ancients of the Shang Dynasty [16th to 11th century B.C.].

Here is the Chinese name for Guy Thomas

Chinese Guy Thomas

Here below is the Chinese name for William Baker

Chinese Will Baker

English Words Borrowed from Chinese

Words taken completely or in part from another language are known as loanwords. In the English language, there are many loanwords that have been borrowed from Chinese languages and dialects.  Here are ten common English words that are borrowed from Chinese.

  1. Coolie: While some claim that this term has its origins in Hindi, it's been argued that it could also have origins in the Chinese term for hard work or 苦力 (kǔ lì) which is literally translated as "bitter labour."
  2. Gung Ho: The term has its origins in the Chinese word 工合 (gōng hé) that can either mean to work together, or as an adjective to describe someone that is overly excited or too enthusiastic. The term gong he is a shortened word for industrial cooperatives which were created in China in the 1930s. During that time U.S. Marines adopted the term to mean someone with a can-do attitude.
  3. Chop Chop: This term is said to originate from the Cantonese dialect for the word 快快 (kuài kuài) which is said to urge someone to hurry up. Kuai means hurry in Chinese. "Chop Chop" appeared in English-language newspapers printed in China by foreign settlers as early as the 1800s.
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Shanghai, China 2010: World Expo Chinese Expo 2010

World Expositions are galleries of human inspirations and thoughts. Since the Great Exhibition of 1851 was held at Crystal Palace, London, the World Expositions have attained increasing prominence as grand events for economic, scientific, technological and cultural exchanges, serving as an important platform for displaying historical experience, exchanging innovative ideas, demonstrating esprit de corps and looking to the future.

The picture to the right is an Artist's impression of the China Pavilion

Expo2010 will take place in Shanghai, China. Will and Guy would like to share with readers what can be expected at this 2010 exposition.

  • It will take place in Shanghai, China. Expo 2010 Shanghai China
  • While the Chinese New Year in 2010 begins on February 14th, the Expo starts on 1st May 2010 and runs until 31st October 2010.
  • 100 million visitors are expected to attend.
  • There are already 194 participants signed up to display their exhibits
  • Theme of Expo 2010 is "Better City, Better Life," representing the common wish of the whole humankind for a better living in future urban environments.
  • This emblem, depicts the image of three people: you, me, him/her holding hands together, symbolizing the big family of mankind.
  • See here the Marvellous pavilions which have been, and are being built.  We are pleased to report that they will use solar energy.
  • Watch the promotional Expo 2010 video here 
  • Created from a Chinese character meaning people, the mascot "Haibao" embodies the character of Chinese culture.  See the lovely Haibao character below.

Chinese Expo 2010 Mascot

Watermelon Haibao Expo 2010Expo 2010 Haibao

...(videVfl2)

A student carves the Expo mascot 'Haibao' on a watermelon at Jinan Shandong province, March 11, 2010

Huang Fu and the Bottle of Wine Parable

Huang Fu was a very rich man who was deliberately tough on his farmhand, Hop. Huang Fu gave Hop a bottle and said, 'Buy me a bottle of wine.'

Hop, the poor farmhand enquired, 'How can I buy you wine with no money at all?'
Huang Fu replied disdainfully, 'Anyone can buy wine with money. It takes real skill to buy wine without money.'

Time elapsed and Hop eventually returned farmhand returned with the empty bottle. He handed the bottle to Huang Fu and murmured, 'Enjoy the wine, please.'

Staring at the empty bottle with some dismay, Huang asked, 'There is no wine, how can I enjoy this?'

Hop replied to Huang Fu, with a straight face, 'Anyone can enjoy wine if there is some.  It takes real skill to enjoy wine when there is none.'

Huang Fu made a choking sound but was unable to utter a word. China Stamp Record

See more funny Chinese jokes and short stories

Vintage Chinese Stamp Sells for Record Sum in Hong Kong

The "Small One Dollar", a rare Chinese stamp dated from 1897, sold for HK$4.8 million [$617,959 USD] to an Asian bidder, setting a record price for a single Chinese stamp at an auction in Hong Kong in January 2010.

 

 

Footnote:
Please write to Will and Guy if you have any pictures or stories of the lunar Chinese New Year 2010.

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See More About the Chinese New Year Calendar, also Jokes and Funny Stories:

Chinese New Year 2014   • Chinese Day October 1st   • Chinese New Year jokes   • What New Year

Chinese New Year 2015   • Interesting Chinese facts   • Chinese traditional foods   • Chinese food

Chinese Valentine's Day   • Chinese Moon Festival Zhongqiujie   • Chinese New Year Lantern Festival