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The Year of the Tiger

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The Tiger is the third of twelve animals appearing in the Chinese Zodiac. Legend has it that the Jade Emperor would determine the order by which the animals arrived at a party. The Ox left the night before and arrived first, while the Tiger showed up early the next morning as the second animal. But the Rat had secretly stowed away on the Ox, meaning the other two were bumped down to second and third. The Tiger objected to this, but the Jade Emperor stuck with that order.

In Chinese culture, the Tiger is considered the guardian of the children. Babies and infants wear hats and shoes decorated with tigers as a way to fend off evil spirits.

Tiger Stats

  • Season: Spring
  • Element: Wood
  • Energy: Yang
  • Sun Sign: Aquarius
  • Lucky Directions: North, South, East
  • Unlucky Directions: Southwest
  • Lucky Colors: Blue, Green
  • Unlucky Colors: Brown, White
  • Lucky Numbers: 1, 3, 4
  • Unlucky Numbers: 6, 7, 8
  • Lucky Flowers: Cineraria, Yellow Lily
  • Most Compatible With: Horse, Pig, Dog
  • Least Compatible With: Snake, Monkey
  • Recent Years: 1902, 1914, 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010


People born in the Year of the Tiger are kind at heart, benevolent, and considered to be born leaders. They possess a tough attitude that helps them stand up to pressures from the outside world. Fearless and noble, a Tiger's courage earns respect from everyone - even their adversaries.

While stable and strong, they're notorious for sometimes holding too much inside and can have difficulties releasing that stress. They also sometimes act unpredictably and without warning, but this is usually an exciting event that keeps things interesting for their family and friends.

Tigers will stand up for what they believe is right and fight for it until the bitter end. They can sometimes be selfish, but they're also known for their great generosity. They're intense, hard working, and always moving, seemingly in a hurry to get things done. For this reason, they often prefer to work alone. Because of their high energy levels, many Tigers are active in various sports and benefit most from aerobic exercises like speed walking and jogging.

Tigers tend to be picky eaters because they can be sensitive to food. Sweets are their main weakness, but they need to be careful as it can lead to dental issues and diabetes. They need to stay disciplined to stick to a healthy diet. Their sleeping habits generally aren't the best, either, given that they may have anxiety or stressful careers. Insomnia is a common problem for them, so they need to remember to slow down once in a while for a well-deserved break.


In Chinese element theory, all zodiacs are associated with the five elements of wood, fire, water, earth, and metal. It's believed that a person's birth year's animal sign and element determine their disposition:

  • Wood (1914, 1974): Honest, expansive, compassionate, and open
  • Fire (1926, 1986): Composed, enjoy learning, independent, and optimistic, but with poor self-control
  • Earth (1938, 1998): Realistic, intelligent, extreme, and adventurous; possesses strong faith
  • Metal (1950, 2010): Family oriented, patient, and tolerant; males are stubborn, indecisive, and feminized; females are enthusiastic
  • Water (1902, 1962): Straightforward; have a strong ability to learn and high self-esteem

Famous Tigers

  • Marilyn Monroe, Queen Elizabeth II (1926)
  • Jim Carrey (1962)
  • Ludwig von Beethoven (1770)
  • Marco Polo (1254)
  • Karl Marx, Emily Brontë (1818)
  • Dwight Eisenhower, Agatha Christie (1890)
  • Dalai Lama (1950)
  • Joseph Stalin (1878)

Careers and Money

Tigers are naturals when it comes to looking for and finding new opportunities wherever they go. They yearn to hone their profession and improve their skills, so they tend to put a lot of effort into emphasizing their appearance to better match the situation. Consequently, respect and titles are important to Tigers, and they perform better in small communities where they can get their hands on a more involved position, rather than impersonal large corporations.

That said, a Tiger's adaptability means they will likely succeed regardless of where they go, so long as they can manage a healthy balance between work and home. They possess a natural aversion to the mundane and usually don't much effort into repetitive work with no meaning. As a result, they're best suited for careers that allow them to express their individuality - for example, acting, writing, art, music, comedy, aviation, office management, and advertising. Often times, though, they don't always find their true calling until their thirties.

Interpersonal Relationships

Individuals who are born in the Year of the Tiger will attempt to acquire another's respect by working hard and remaining stable in their demeanor. They're among the most adept of the signs when it comes to meeting new people, and other signs typically view Tigers with admiration and reverence.

The downside to developing such an image means Tigers have to put a lot of effort into readying themselves before approaching anyone, which can lead others to view them as something more than human. Tigers can have a tough time finding the best balance between whimsical passion and disciplined trust, particularly when their emotions are running high.


Tigers can come off as aggressive to others, but this is only because of the underlying intensity that amplifies everything they do - including romantic relationships. New relationships are quick to begin, and Tigers like to let them run their course and will put an end to them if the match ends up being the incorrect one. Being romantically involved with a Tiger can be both ecstatic and painful, and it can feel rather chaotic.

Some Tigers are more focused on developing or furthering their careers than with romance, so singles don't always take the time to concern themselves with relationships. For those who have a significant other, that person is always considered first before anyone else. By contrast, though, they sometimes neglect the other person and forget to communicate. The stress and anxiety from work may lead to arguments, so these Tigers need to remember to set aside time for the two of them, maybe even take a mini vacation.

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