As New Year approaches in China, a look at Year of the Rat

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Jan 24, 2020, 03.28 PM(IST) Edited By: Abhilash Mahajan

Visitors in traditional cheongsams take a selfie in a shop decorated for the Chinese Lunar New Year in Bangkok Photograph:( AFP )

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The date of the new year varies each year as it comes as per the lunisolar Chinese calendar

Amid the outbreak of deadly coronavirus, the Chinese still have something to cheer with the arrival of the new year. This year holds special significance for Chinese as 2020 will be the Year of the Rat, which arrives after an interval of 12 years.

Chinese New Year, which is also known as Lunar Near Year, will fall on Saturday 25. The date of the new year varies each year as it comes as per the lunisolar Chinese calendar.

China lunar year

(Visitors in traditional cheongsams take a selfie in a shop decorated for the Chinese Lunar New Year in Bangkok | Photo Credit: AFP) 

The last year was celebrated as the Year of the Pig and 2021 will mark as the Year of the Ox. 

China New Year

(A woman poses for pictures in a shop decorated for the Chinese Lunar New Year in Bangkok | AFP)
 

The Chinese decorate their homes with red colour and participate in parades as part of the celebrations to welcome the Year of the Rat. 

The rat is the first of the 12 animals as per the Chinese zodiac. 

As per a popular mythological tale, rodent is a symbol of intelligence and quick-witticism. As per the story, the Jade Emperor organised a race among a group of animals on his birthday and the results decided the order of the zodiac. 

Since rats also have high reproduction rates, they are also a symbol of fertility. 

William Shakespeare, Katy Perry, Scarlett Johansson and the Duke of Sussex were some of the prominent personalities born on the Year of the Rat.