Lunar New Year marks the first day of the lunisolar calendar based on the cycles of the moon. This year, it occurs on January 22, 2023, and begins the Year of the Rabbit, as determined by the Chinese Zodiac. Lunar New Year is also called Spring Festival because it occurs between the Winter Solstice and Vernal Equinox. Also known as Chinese New Year, the holiday is celebrated by over a billion people in many different countries and goes by different names and traditions. It is still the most important festival in several Southeast and Northeast Asian countries including Korea, Vietnam, and Singapore, especially among those of Chinese descent. Lunar New Year marks the end of the old and the beginning of the new year. It is on the first day of the first lunar month.
“The rabbit is the fourth animal in the Chinese zodiac. In Chinese culture, the rabbit is known to be the luckiest out of all the twelve animals. It symbolizes mercy, elegance, and beauty. People who are born in the year of the rabbit are calm and peaceful. They avoid fighting and arguing at all times, but are artistic and have good taste in life. This is why they pay close attention to small details and make sure everything is done correctly. They are insecure and sensitive people who don’t like to be criticized, which causes them to dislike changes. Rabbits are intelligent, and they will do everything at their best, which makes them good scholars. In the Vietnamese zodiac, a cat is in place of the rabbit.”
Rabbit Years: 1903, 1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, 2023” - Source: University of Washington
Credits: Special thanks to Jennifer Starkey, Research Services Librarian, Case Western Reserve, for permission to adapt some of the text in this guide. Unless otherwise noted, all text is attributed to Jennifer Starkey and all images are from Britannica ImageQuest.