History, Significance, and Everything You Need to Know About the Year of the Rabbit 2023

Chinese New Year – Year of the Rabbit

year of the rabbit

The Year of the Rabbit, 2023 began on January 22, 2023. This Sunday was the first day of the New Lunar Year.


22 January, also known as Chinese New Year, is the day when the Year of the Tiger is officially retired and the Year of the Rabbit is officially ushered in. The Spring Festival is a Chinese event that commemorates the arrival of spring and pays respect to the ancestors and deities of the Chinese people.


The Chinese calendar divides the cycle into twelve annual cycles, with the year of the rabbit being the most auspicious.


Born in 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, 2023, or 2035? Congratulations, you’re a Rabbit!


Google Doodle

Google has designed a Doodle to celebrate the new lunar year, which ushers in the Year of the Rabbit (the fourth animal in the Chinese zodiac). The rabbit is a sign of good luck, beauty, grace, and mercy in Asian civilizations. This Doodle pays homage to the ancient Chinese art form of paper cutting, Jianzhi, by being made entirely out of paper.



Experts admit that they only know a “slight amount” about the history of the Lunar New Year celebration.


One notion, according to UC Irvine, is that it started out as animal worship in northern nomadic civilizations some 3,500 years ago.


According to a myth in Buddhism, animals gathered to say goodbye to a dying Buddha. It started as an animal contest when the Jade Emperor was choosing palace guards, according to Chinese mythology.


“The ox was meant to arrive first in both versions,” explains professor Hu Ying of UC Irvine.


It’s the time of year when Asian cultures all over the world say goodbye to the Year of the Tiger and hello to the Year of the Rabbit, as they celebrate Lunar New Year, also known as the Chinese New Year or the Spring Festival.


There will be parades, fireworks, and family get-togethers as is customary on this holiday.


There is an ancient urban legend that goes back thousands of years, about a supernatural beast that would threaten villages by appearing from beneath the ground on January 1st. Nian (Chinese for “year”), the beast, was driven away from the city by the use of these deterrents due to his extreme aversion to the aforementioned factors: bright lights, loud noises, and the colour red.


However, the Lunar New Year is more than simply the start of a new calendar year; it also marks the end of winter and the beginning of spring, symbolising renewal and rebirth.


Which animal is going to be honoured this year?

Each year in the Chinese calendar corresponds to one of 12 different animals: rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig.


If you follow the Gregorian calendar, 2023 will be known as the Year of the Rabbit.


Grace, beauty, kindness, and good fortune are all associated with the rabbit, the fourth animal in the Chinese zodiac. The lunar Jade Rabbit is the legendary link between rabbits and the moon.


The lunar calendar is based not only on the 12 zodiac animals, but also on a cycle of 10 “heavenly stems,” each of which represents one of the Taoist elements (fire, earth, water, wood, and metal). In the Chinese zodiac, 2022 was the Year of the Water Tiger, and 2023 will be the Year of the Water Rabbit.


The Water element is associated with a more imaginative, intuitive, and introspective personality type in those born in a Water year.


Year of the Rabbit 2023: Symbolic Meaning 

Seventeen spoke with Dottie Li, a cross-cultural communications consultant, who predicted a tranquil 2023 based on the cultural significance of the rabbit. We may anticipate calmness, fluidity, serenity, and introspection due to the traits of the rabbit.


Additionally, those born in the Year of the Rabbit are considered to be calm, staying away from conflict, criticism, and change.


The Chinese Language Institute claims that although people think of rabbits as being extremely brilliant and tenacious, they may also be susceptible to envy and pessimism.


Angelina Jolie, Michael Jordan, Albert Einstein, Brad Pitt, and Frank Sinatra are just a few famous persons that were born in the Year of the Rabbit.


Year of the Rabbit 2023: Celebration

In Asia, the colours red and gold signify success and prosperity. At the Lunar New Year celebration, many individuals don red clothes and give youngsters money in red envelopes. Families will prepare meals, clean their houses, and pay respects at cemeteries and memorials.


Fireworks are let off to scare away wicked creatures and bad fortune, and houses are cleaned from top to bottom to make room for the incoming good fortune. The celebrations, which run for nearly two weeks, begin with a midnight procession that features floats, dragons, dancers, and singers.


There are many ways to celebrate the start of a new year, but each culture has its own traditions. The Korean holiday of Seollal celebrates the first day of the Chinese lunisolar calendar and is marked with gift-giving and a feast of rice cake soup and savoury pancakes.


In Vietnam, where the Lunar New Year is known as Tết, the Year of the Cat begins on January 22. Participants consume traditional dishes such as Thịt Kho trứng (pork cooked with duck eggs) and adorn yellow apricot flowers and other plants.


The traditions of Chinese New Year, such as dragon parades, boat races, and fireworks, are quite well-known.  Desserts like sticky rice balls (tangyuan) are served at the New Year’s Eve Lantern Festival.


Despite the fact that New Year’s celebrations sometimes begin the weekend before and might continue for weeks beyond, only the first 15 days are officially recognised as holidays.


To celebrate the completion of the New Year celebrations, the Lantern Festival is held on the night of the first full moon of the year. The date will be February 5th, 2023.


Manchester’s Chinatown will feature a full day of fun events for the whole family, including lion dances, Chinese dancers, food stands, and Chinese arts and crafts from January 21 to January 29,


In London, Trafalgar Square will be bustling with festivities. There, guests will be treated to a screen display, a thanksgiving ceremony, fireworks, speeches, the lions’ eye-dotting ritual, and much more.


You can wish someone a happy Chinese New Year by saying “Gong hei fat choy” in Cantonese.


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Written by Verla Harvey

Verla Harvey is a passionate blogger and content creator with a mission to inspire, educate, and entertain people.

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