2013
Aug
5

Reading the Chinese years

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Chinese years (Photo: Chee Hiang Chua)

Chinese years (Photo: Chua Chee Hiang)

 

For those of us Brownies stumped when asked by participants on the tours for the years of birth and death in an ancient counting system, one CHUA Chee Hiang  has kindly stepped forward with this handy guide. Thank you, Chee Hiang!

He says, “Most of the dates on the tombstones follow the lunar calendar format – the 年(lunar) (followed by xx月, 初xx) vs. the 岁(solar). The Chinese calendar is lunisolar as the lunar calendar is constantly being updated with the solar calendar to keep the festival dates in tune with the climate.”

 

And for the Imperial calendars, this is the guide, with the Emperor’s regnal year being Year Zero. So 13th year of the reign of Dao Guang (1821-1850) on Fang Shan’s tomb = 1833.

 

Regnal table (Photo: Chee Hiang Chua)

Regnal table (Photo: Chua Chee Hiang)

 

Fang Shan at Qing Ming (photo: Claire Leow)

Fang Shan at Qing Ming (photo: Claire Leow)

Happy deciphering!

For further reading:

The Chinese Calendar 

 

Bio: Chua Chee Hiang is a geomancer, or feng shui practitioner. He writes a fengshui blog and a personal blog.