The Chinese horoscope or zodiac has the characteristic of attributing to each sign the personality of an animal, twelve in total: rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog and pig. With regard to this peculiarity there are several legends around it, let’s see some of them. One of these speaks of a call made by Buddha to all the animals of the earth, to speak of his last will; but only twelve animals showed up and he turned them into the twelve signs of the Chinese zodiac.
Another of the legends, explains how the order of the animals that make up this horoscope was chosen. According to, the rat was ordered to make an invitation to all the animals of the kingdom, to the banquet of the Jade emperor, for this they had to participate in a race and according to the position in which the first twelve arrived, they would be the chosen ones.
In the way that the animals had to follow in that race, they had to cross a river; the rat and the cat who were very friendly, worried about being bad swimmers and agreed to ask the ox to take them on his back and he agreed. When arriving on the other side, because the rat wanted to be the first to arrive, he pushed the cat into the river, hence they became eternal enemies, and the rat was rewarded with the first place.
Logically, who was closest to the rat was the ox, so he got the second place, then the tiger appeared, who narrated his strong fight against the current of the river, being the third sign; the fourth position was obtained by the rabbit who explained to the emperor that, despite his ability to jump, he almost fell into the river and was saved by a log that floated in the water.
Then, the dragon appeared who said that he could not get there in the first place, despite flying, since on the way he had to stop to create rain and thus help the farmers who needed it for their crops. He also got through to the rabbit, floating on a log and with his breath he pushed him to the shore.
Shortly after the horse arrives, which came at full gallop scared by the snake, which made him roll on the road, the reason why he won at the finish, remaining her in sixth place and he in the seventh.
The sheep, the monkey and the rooster, helped each other to cross the river, the emperor very pleased by this teamwork, decided to give the sheep the eighth place, the monkey the ninth and the rooster the tenth place. The dog obtained the eleventh position and although he was the best swimmer, he delayed his arrival, for taking a cool swim in the irresistible river. The animal that got the last place, was the pig who stopped on the way to eat and then take a nap.
In this way, the emperor managed to obtain the 12 animals that would be eternally venerated as representatives of the Chinese horoscope.