Raturday - An Introduction


Today we’re celebrating the Chinese New Year with a few Rat themed articles. Susan Omand explains more about the Year of the Rat...

Rats get an unjustified bad rap [not including the Roland Rat song which was definitely a justifiably bad rap! – Ed] so it may seem unusual that the Rat is revered enough to be the first sign of the Chinese zodiac, which cycles through a series of zodiac signs, one a year instead of one a month like the western zodiac does.

There are 12 Chinese zodiac signs, in the following order: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig and the sign changes in late January or early February, so that’s something to remember if you have a birthday around then and are trying to work out which sign you are.  See the table at the bottom of the article for the last few cycles to help. Of course, it’s all a lot more complicated than that, there’s one of five elements, wood, fire, water, earth, metal to be added in for a more full horoscope – for instance this year is the year of the Metal Rat!


So what does being born in the Year of the Rat actually mean for you? Well, apparently, you’re imaginative, generous, highly intelligent, wealthy, successful and popular. Rats are also curious and thoughtful, hard working, positive and like tidiness. It’s not all roses though as you can be timid, stubborn, indecisive, devious, shortsighted, vain and gullible. Oh, and you LOVE to gossip.
Your Lucky Flowers are Lily, African violet and Lily of the valley, your colours are blue, green and gold and your gemstone is Garnet. If you’re thinking of putting on a lottery ticket, your lucky numbers are 2 and 3 but avoid 5 and 9 like the…erm… plague!

And that’s another thing. Rats weren’t responsible for the plague either. But I’ll let Ratatouille’s Remy and Emil from Ratatouille tell you more about that, and everything else that’s great about Rats in this Pixar short film.



The Chinese Zodiac years

Feb 10, 1948 – Jan 28, 1949 Rat (Zi)
Jan 29, 1949 – Feb 16, 1950 Ox (Chou)
Feb 17, 1950 – Feb 5, 1951 Tiger (Yin)
Feb 6, 1951 – Jan 26, 1952 Rabbit (Mao)
Jan 27, 1952 – Feb 13, 1953 Dragon (Chen)
Feb 14, 1953 – Feb 2, 1954 Snake (Si)
Feb 3, 1954 – Jan 23, 1955 Horse (Wu)
Jan 24, 1955 – Feb 11, 1956 Sheep (Wei)
Feb 12, 1956 – Jan 30, 1957 Monkey (Shen)
Jan 31, 1957 – Feb 17, 1958 Rooster (You)
Feb 18, 1958 – Feb 8, 1959 Dog (Xu)
Feb 8, 1959 – Jan 27, 1960 Boar/Pig (Hai)
Jan 28, 1960 – Feb 14, 1961 Rat (Zi)
Feb 15, 1961 – Feb 4, 1962 Ox (Chou)
Feb 5, 1962 – Jan 24, 1963 Tiger (Yin)
Jan 25, 1963 – Feb 12, 1964 Rabbit (Mao)
Feb 13, 1964 – Feb 1, 1965 Dragon (Chen)
Feb 2, 1965 – Jan 20, 1966 Snake (Si)
Jan 21, 1966 – Feb 8, 1967 Horse (Wu)
Feb 9, 1967 – Jan 29, 1968 Sheep (Wei)
Jan 30, 1968 – Feb 16, 1969 Monkey (Shen)
Feb 17, 1969 – Feb 5, 1970 Rooster (You)
Feb 6, 1970 – Jan 26, 1971 Dog (Xu)
Jan 27, 1971 - Feb 14, 1972 Boar/Pig (Hai)
Feb 15, 1972 – Feb 2, 1973 Rat (Zi)
Feb 3, 1973 – Jan 22, 1974 Ox (Chou)
Jan 23, 1974 – Feb 10, 1975 Tiger (Yin)
Feb 11, 1975 – Jan 30, 1976 Rabbit (Mao)
Jan 31, 1976 – Feb 17, 1977 Dragon (Chen)
Feb 18, 1977 – Feb 6, 1978 Snake (Si)
Feb 7, 1978 – Jan 27, 1979 Horse (Wu)
Jan 28, 1979 – Feb 15, 1980 Sheep (Wei)
Feb 16, 1980 – Feb 4, 1981 Monkey (Shen)
Feb 5, 1981 – Jan 24, 1982 Rooster (You)
Jan 25, 1982 - Feb 12, 1983 Dog (Xu)
Feb 13, 1983 - Feb 1, 1984 Boar/Pig (Hai)
Feb 2, 1984 – Feb 19, 1985 Rat (Zi)
Feb 20, 1985 – Feb 8, 1986 Ox (Chou)
Feb 9, 1986 – Jan 28, 1987 Tiger (Yin)
Jan 29, 1987 – Feb 16, 1988 Rabbit (Mao)
Feb 17, 1988 – Feb 5, 1989 Dragon (Chen)
Feb 6, 1989 – Jan 26, 1990 Snake (Si)
Jan 27, 1990 – Feb 14, 1991 Horse (Wu)
Feb 15, 1991 – Feb 3, 1992 Sheep (Wei)
Feb 4, 1992 – Jan 22, 1993 Monkey (Shen)
Jan 23, 1993 – Feb 9, 1994 Rooster (You)
Feb 10, 1994 – Jan 30, 1995 Dog (Xu)
Jan 31, 1995 - Feb 18, 1996 Boar/Pig (Hai)
Feb 19, 1996 – Feb 6, 1997 Rat (Zi)
Feb 7, 1997 – Jan 27, 1998 Ox (Chou)
Jan 28, 1998 – Feb 15, 1999 Tiger (Yin)
Feb 16, 1999 – Feb 4, 2000 Rabbit (Mao)
Feb 5, 2000 – Jan 23, 2001 Dragon (Chen)
Jan 24, 2001 – Feb 11, 2002 Snake (Si)
Feb 12, 2002 – Jan 31, 2003 Horse (Wu)
Feb 1, 2003 – Jan 21, 2004 Sheep (Wei)
Jan 22, 2004 – Feb 8, 2005 Monkey (Shen)
Feb 9, 2005 – Jan 28, 2006 Rooster (You)
Jan 29, 2006 – Feb 17, 2007 Dog (Xu)
Feb 18, 2007 - Feb 6, 2008 Boar/Pig (Hai)
Feb 7, 2008 – Jan 25, 2009 Rat (Zi)
Jan 26, 2009 – Feb 13, 2010 Ox (Chou)
Feb 14, 2010 – Feb 2, 2011 Tiger (Yin)
Feb 3, 2011 – Jan 22, 2012 Rabbit (Mao)
Jan 23, 2012 – Feb 9, 2013 Dragon (Chen)
Feb 10, 2013 – Jan 30, 2014 Snake (Si)
Jan 31, 2014 – Feb 18, 2015 Horse (Wu)
Feb 19, 2015 – Feb 7, 2016 Sheep (Wei)
Feb 8, 2016 – Jan 27, 2017 Monkey (Shen)
Jan 28, 2017 – Feb 15, 2018 Rooster (You)
Feb 16, 2018 – Feb 4, 2019 Dog (Xu)
Feb 5, 2019 – Jan 24, 2020 Boar/Pig (Hai)
Jan 25, 2020 – Feb 11, 2021 Rat (Zi)


Image - Rat Scabies (see what we did there?) - Wikipedia