|Many web sites say 2005 is a Chinese Rooster Year. Actually, 2005 is a Green Female Chicken (Hen) Year, because there is no male chicken year in the Chinese calendar.|
|Therefore, we would like to say 2005 is a Chinese Chicken Year.|
Chinese calendar combines three systems. They are solar, lunar and stem-branch systems. Stem-Branch is the most significant and outstanding counting system in the Chinese Calendar. There are 10 Stems and 12 Branches. Stem and Branch are used together. The Stem is used in the front of (on the top of) the Branch.
10 Stems and 12 Branches are combined into a cycle of 60 counting systems which begin from Wooden Rat and end with Water Pig. You can see the entire sequence from the Chinese New Year's page. From Year 1924 to Year 1983 is a complete cycle. Year 2005 is the green (wood) chicken which is the 22nd of the Stem-Branch system. Year 2006 is the Red Fire Dog.
Nobody knows who invented Stem-Branch. This means the Chinese knew about Stem-Branch before the invention of Chinese characters. Today we can see the Stem-Branch symbols in the ancient Chinese oracle bones. At the beginning, Stem-Branch was for counting the DAY only. Later, the Yin-Yang Five-Element scholars applied Stem-Branch into a MONTH, YEAR and HOUR system. more...
Chinese apply Yin-Yang into the numbers. The odd numbers (1,3,5,7,9,11) are in the Yang group. The even numbers (2,4,6,8,10,12) are in the Yin group. Yang implies male and Yin implies female. From the sequence order of Stem-Branch, we know the Rat, Tiger, Dragon, Horse, Monkey, and Dog are Yang or male and Cow, Rabbit, Snake, Sheep, Chicken (Hen) and Pig are Yin or female. Anyway, chicken is the 10th animal and it's a female. Therefore, there is no Rooster, Ox or Bull in the Chinese calendar.