Chinese New Year 2013 – The Year of the Snake in Chinese Astrology

(Image:  Dun.can  via   flickr  /  CC BY 2.0 )

While saying farewell to the celestial dragon, we welcome the intelligent snake. Chinese New Year in 2013 falls on Sunday Feb 10 – it is the Year of the Snake in the Chinese zodiac. Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival, starts on the first day of the first Chinese month (and ends with the Lantern Festival, which is on the 15th day) and is the most important festival for the Chinese people.

Chinese New Year is celebrated by eating special New Year food, setting off fireworks, visiting friends and relatives, delivering red packages as good wishes and hanging out lanterns. Many Chinese people regard 2013 as a good year because it is right after the auspicious Year of the Dragon.

The Chinese calendar differs from the Western (Gregorian) calendar in that the beginning of the Chinese New Year falls on a different day every year, with dates ranging between late January and late February. The Chinese Zodiac has a rotating cycle of 12 years, with each year being represented by an animal.

The Snake, also called the Junior Dragon by Chinese people, is the sixth sign of the Chinese Zodiac, which consists of 12 animal signs: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig.

Characteristics of the Snake

People born in the Year of Snake share certain characteristics: they are intelligent, cute, charming, aware, elegant, mysterious, cunning and passionate. They may also be proud, vain and vicious. It is said that they are great mediators and good at doing business, which is fortunate, since snakes place a lot of weight on the finer things in life.


Chinese character for Snake. (Brad T./ChinaGaze)

At home, snakes prefer quiet and relaxing environments, and prefer subdued colours and good decor. In love, the snake has high standards for romantic partners and places a weight on intellect and personality. Physically, a snake is beautiful and alluring, but prefers to be the pursuer in any romantic situation.

Once she is settled, she may become possessive and aloof, but with a patient and calming partner, a happy union is possible. Depending on the year of birth, one may be a metal snake (1941, 2001), water snake (1953, 2013), wood snake (1905, 1965), fire snake (1917, 1977) or earth snake (1929, 1989).

It is said that metal snakes are stubborn and ambitious, water snakes are motivated and adept managers, wood snakes are grounded and enjoy the company of a small group of friends, fire snakes are opinionated and relentless debaters, and earth snakes are down to earth and prefer to lead calm lives.

Snakes in a Snake year

Generally, big things are meant to happen to you in the year of your sign – they may be good events or bad events, but they will be major. So it is generally advised to tread carefully in the year of your animal sign.

Chinese Zodiac signs: the year of your birth

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

In this year of the Water Snake, snakes can expect to achieve some longstanding career goals with hard work and perseverance. Snake qualities, both positive and negative, will be magnified in this year, so it is essential to keep balanced and take extra care in your health.

The same applies in romance. Your natural charms are more potent than ever, so control yourself in this area. Keep a level head and proceed carefully with any potential partner. With the arrival of the Year of the Snake, many people will post a variety of New Year wishes. The most popular ones are “Keep good health in 2013” and “Gathering with family in 2013”, among others.

Rare Photographs of Chinese Foot Binding from the 1800s