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Chinese Zodiac Elements

The Chinese philosophy believes five elements—Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water—are agents of change, and influence each animal sign. Each element has the ability to influence and even control the one that follows it in an eternal cycle similar to the four seasons.

Chinese Element WoodWood
Created by Water, as water is essential to the growth of trees. Wood is represented by new beginnings, springtime and the color green. A Wood person is gregarious and altruistic, but frequently struggles to control their temper.

Chinese Element FireFire
Created by Wood, as logs fuel a fire. Fire says aridity, hot weather and the color red. A person born under the sign of Fire is passionate, enthusiastic and impatient. He or she strives to create a warm cozy atmosphere at home.

Chinese Element EarthEarth
Created by Fire, as ash feeds the soil of our planet. Earth is characterized by mild weather, a sense of calm, balance, and the color yellow. An Earth person is nurturing, fair-minded, but has a tendency to worry too much.

Created by Earth, as earth produces minerals and ore. Metal is represented by autumn, melancholy and the color white. Its influence can cast sadness onto a personality chart. A person born in a Metal year is romantic, nostalgic and a good communicator.

Chinese Element WaterWater
Created by Metal, as spring water emerges from the layers of rock. Water says winter, motion and the color blue. A Water person is kind, perceptive and sensitive. He or she is likely to be musically inclined.


Find your Chinese Zodiac SignOther factors beside the elements come into play in determining someone’s Chinese astrological chart. These include the month, season, time of day, weather, and astral configurations at the time of birth.


Chinese Calendar and Signs