Thursday, January 5, 2006

Legend of the Chinese Zodiac

There are 12 animals in the Chinese Zodiac namely; Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Rooster, Horse, Monkey, Snake, Dog, Dragon, Goat and Pig. Legends abound on its origin and so one story goes that Buddha held a race for all the animals. The first twelve that reached the finish line were given a year each named after them in the Chinese Zodiac. Each year moves in cycles of natural elements like earth, wood, fire, water and metal. 2006 is year of the Fire Dog.

Now why isn't there any year of the Cat? Do cats portend bad luck particularly the black ones? Or they are too full of themselves that joining the race is beyond them?

Ed Young provides an interesting answer in his book The Cat and The Rat, as well as a viable reason why cats and rats hated each other so much. Because, you see, they were such good friends along time ago.


The book is a good read aloud for primary to upper primary levels (garde 1 - 3) and a perfect story to celebrate Chinese New Year. The illustrations lend a mysterious mood to the story, thus, holding the reader's or listener's interest.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...