Chinese New Year 2018 is the Year of the Dog, and with its arrival comes a host of superstitions that will apparently dictate how the next twelve months will play out for each of us.
Cleaning clothes, using scissors and sweeping floors are some of the easier omens to sidestep, however parents might find it difficult to dodge crying children and – on the more extreme end of the scale – women might find it difficult to avoid leaving the house all day
According to Chinese superstition, doing any of these on 16 February – the day Chinese New Year falls on in 2018 – will lead to bad luck for the entire coming year.
It isn’t all doom and gloom: 2018 is the Year of the Dog, an animal which symbolises luck.
There is definitely much more to every human being that just the symbology of their year, but it’s said that people born in the Year of the Dog are loyal, responsible, clever, courageous and lively with characters as diverse as Donald Trump, Prince William, Justin Bieber, Bill Clinton, Dolly Parton and Mother Theresa were all born in the year of the dog.
The annual celebration begins on the new moon that comes between 21 January and 20 February. This year, it starts on 16 February 2018 and will end on 4 February 2019, when the Year of the Pig begins.
The new year, also known in China as the Spring Festival, is marked by the lunisolar Chinese calendar; this means the date changes from year to year.
The festivities usually start the day before the New Year and continue until the Lantern Festival, the 15th day of the new year.
The Chinese zodiac is divided into 12 blocks (or houses) just like its western counterpart, but with the major difference that each house has a time-length of one year instead of one month.
Each Chinese New Year is characterised by one of 12 animals which appear in the Chinese zodiac – and the next one is the Year of the Dog. The dog is the 11th animal in the cycle. Last year was the Year of the Rooster and the next Year of the Dog will be in 2030.