Meaning of Japanese Zodiac Signs! Each 12 Animals represents your character!

Japanese Zodiac Eto

Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu!

This is just “Hello” for the New Year.

How’s your start of 2020?

As for me, well, mostly in front of PC, haha, but I like it.

For the first topic of the New Year, I picked up Japanese Zodiac Signs.
Every year we have a certain animal which represents the year.

I introduce the details of this Japanese Zodiac Signs for the first article in 2020.

Meaning of Japanese Zodiac Eto

Meaning of Japanese Zodiac Eto

Japanese Zodiac is called “Eto (干支)” in Japanese.
It is also called Oriental Zodiac or Chinese Zodiac in English.

If I simply introduce it, it is all about the animals which symbolize the year.

We call animals of 12 years like follows in Japanese.

Ne(ね)(子), Ushi(うし)(丑), Tora(とら)(寅), U(う)(卯), Tatsu(たつ)(辰), Mi(み)(巳), Uma(うま)(午), Hitsuji(ひつじ)(未), Saru(さる)(申), Tori(とり)(酉), Inu(いぬ)(戌), I(い)(亥)

Here are English in order.

Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Dog, Boar

This Japanese Zodiac, or Chinese Zodiac is originated in China in around 1600 B.C.

To calculate date and month, people in those days used this Chinese Zodiac.

They divided astronomical body into 12 to calculate based on the move of Jupiter.

Actually there was no meaning of animals first.
But to make ordinary people understand, they used animals.

It’s easier for people to understand the concept by animals rather than being explained by professional words or explanation, isn’t it.

Eto (Jikkan Jyūnishi)(十干十二支)

Technically speaking, Eto is called Jikkan Jyūnishi (十干十二支)(じっかんじゅうにし) in Japanese.

But most people just say Eto for the 12 animals which represent the year.

This, what we call, Eto is all about Jyūnishi.

Jyūnishi (十二支)

Jyūnishi(十二支) is separated into following 12 names of the animals as I introduced first.

Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, Boar


Jikkan(十干) is separated into following 10 factors.

Koū, Otsu, Hei, Tei, Bo, Ki, Kou, Shin, Jin, Ki

This is originated from the Theory of Yin-Yang and the Five Elements in ancient China.

They are combined with following Five Elements and set to Yin-Yang.

Five ElementsMoku
(木)(もく), Ka (火)(か), Do (土)(ど), Gon (金)(Gon), Sui (水)(Sui)

Yin (陽)
E (兄)(え)

Yang (陰)
To (弟)(To)

Kinoe, Kinoto, Hinoe, Hinoto, Tsuchinoe, Tsuchinoto, Kanoe, Kanoto, Mizunoe, Mizunoto

Combination of Jyūnishi and Jikkan becomes 60 in total.

Meaning of 12 animals of Japanese Zodiac Signs

Japanese Zodiac Signs

Each Eto, or animals has each characters.

For example, the person born in the year of rat is hardworking.

Yes, it is like a horoscope.

So nobody knows if it is true or not.
It’s up to you.

Here I introduce each animals’ characters.

Rat (Ne)(Nezumi)

Hardworking, friendly and sociable.

Do not waste money for nothing.

Have a good adaptability.

Ox (Ushi)

Work on things steadily step by step with strong will.
Rarely count on others.

Others might regard it as slow but it is the prove of neat and accurate work.

He or she might be frugal with words and shy first, so it might take a bit time for them to open to others.

Tiger (Tora)

Active and challenger.

Hardworking person but sometimes reckless.
Cut out for solo play, not good at team play.

For love, he or she is romantic.

Rabbit (U)(Usagi)

Cheerful and pacifist.

He or she is also sociable and loved by people around.

Sometimes moody.

Dragon (Tatsu)(Ryu)

Competitive and hate losing.

Do things in one’s own way.

Has vitality and creativity that he or she can think out of the box.

For love, slow to warm up to love and romantic like a person of the year of tiger.

Snake (Mi)(Hebi)

Calm, smart and has pride.
Has aspirations and talent for a certain thing.

He or she might be a bit cold but once you know them well, you’ll know they are interesting and humorous people.

Horse (Uma)

Friendly and sociable.

It is said that it has the top vitality among 12 animals in Eto.

Like the people of the year of Dragon, hate losing.

With challenging spirit, he or she works on things seriously.

Sheep (Hitsuji)

Cautious and calm.

And pacifist like the people in the year of Rabbit.

He or she is competitive and hates losing while looks calm.

Sometimes gets lonely easily.

Monkey (Saru)

Active and optimistic.

Naughty but he or she has a lovable character.
Good at socializing.

Sometimes lacking in patience.

Rooster (Tori)

Blessed with fortune and have something of a genius.

Pay attention to the details but sometimes it goes too far like a perfectionist.

He or she has the artisan spirit.

Dog (Inu)

Hardworking and strong sense of justice.

Sociable and cooperative.

But sometimes touchy and worrier.

For love, single-minded and devoted.

Boar (I)(Inoshishi)

Soft touch and busybody in a good meaning.

Has patience and guts.
He or she pulls through things with strong will.

But sometimes don’t listen to others’ advice amenably.

Japanese Zodiac in 2020

Japanese Zodiac in 2020

So, What is Japanese Zodiac this year 2020?

The answer is “Rat”.

It’s the year of Rat.

Yes, this 2020 is the very first animal of Eto.

Rat symbolizes hardworking.
Friendly and sociable person.

He or she might be a curious person but that also sometimes means get distracted easily.
Focusing on one thing to the end is key to accomplish things.

If you were born in 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2019, this year is your year!

What is your Japanese Zodiac Sign?

Zodiac Signs

Here is all the Japanese Zodiac Signs from 1960 to 2020.

Which year do you fall on?

Year Animal Japanese
1960 Rat 子(ねずみ)
1961 Ox 丑(うし)
1962 Tiger 寅(とら)
1963 Rabbit 卯 (うさぎ)
1964 Dragon 辰 (たつ)
1965 Snake 巳 (み・へび)
1966 Horse 午(うま)
1967 Sheep 未(ひつじ)
1968 Monkey 申(さる)
1969 Rooster 酉(とり)
1970 Dog 戌(いぬ)
1971 Boar 亥(い・いのしし)
1972 Rat 子 (ねずみ)
1973 Ox 丑 (うし)
1974 Tiger 寅 (とら)
1975 Rabbit 卯 (うさぎ)
1976 Dragon 辰 (たつ)
1977 Snake 巳 (み・へび)
1978 Horse 午(うま)
1979 Sheep 未(ひつじ)
1980 Monkey 申(さる)
1981 Rooster 酉(とり)
1982 Dog 戌(いぬ)
1983 Boar 亥(い・いのしし)
1984 Rat 子 (ねずみ)
1985 Ox 丑 (うし)
1986 Tiger 寅 (とら)
1987 Rabbit 卯 (うさぎ)
1988 Dragon 辰 (たつ)
1989 Snake 巳 (み・へび)
1990 Horse 午(うま)
1991 Sheep 未(ひつじ)
1992 Monkey 申(さる)
1993 Rooster 酉(とり)
1994 Dog 戌(いぬ)
1995 Boar 亥(い・いのしし)
1996 Rat 子 (ねずみ)
1997 Ox 丑 (うし)
1998 Tiger 寅 (とら)
1999 Rabbit 卯 (うさぎ)
2000 Dragon 辰 (たつ)
2001 Snake 巳 (み・へび)
2002 Horse 午(うま)
2003 Sheep 未(ひつじ)
2004 Monkey 申(さる)
2005 Rooster 酉(とり)
2006 Dog 戌(いぬ)
2007 Boar 亥(い・いのしし)
2008 Rat 子 (ねずみ)
2009 Ox 丑 (うし)
2010 Tiger 寅 (とら)
2011 Rabbit 卯 (うさぎ)
2012 Dragon 辰 (たつ)
2013 Snake 巳 (み・へび)
2014 Horse 午(うま)
2015 Sheep 未(ひつじ)
2016 Monkey 申(さる)
2017 Rooster 酉(とり)
2018 Dog 戌(いぬ)
2019 Boar 亥(い・いのしし)
2028 Rat 子 (ねずみ)






Did you check your animal?

I checked my year Monkey.

Actually I’m really realist and don’t believe in this kind of things seriously although I enjoy it.

Active and optimistic.
Naughty but lovable character(maybe).
Good at socializing but lacking in patience.

I have to admit that’s exactly I am since I was a child f ^ ^ ;

Still I have to say most of other friends in the same year Monkey is not like that.

Anyway it might be good to enjoy as a fun.

2020 is the very start of Eto, the year of Rat.

Let’s enjoy our lives with a fresh mind!

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