Twelve Zodiac Stories and Legends

By Fei Gao on Dec 13, 2023

 Stories about the zodiac are a very interesting topic. The stories mentioned here include myths, legends, allusions, etc.

    In the ranking of the twelve zodiac signs, why is the rat ranked first because the smaller one is the larger one? This question first puzzled human sages and today’s wise men: In terms of body shape, the mouse is so small that it can be played with in the palm of one’s hand. Among the twelve zodiac animals, it is the smallest. one of. ; In terms of brute strength, it is simply incomparable with the strength of cattle, the might of tigers, the power of dragons, and the leaping of horses; in terms of quality, it is the steadfastness of cattle, the kindness of rabbits, the diligence of horses, the docility of sheep, and the docility of pigs. In fact, they all appear to be many times better than mice; in terms of wisdom, the dexterity of monkeys and the intelligence of dogs are also superior to mice. To put it bluntly, even if we compare who is the most vicious, snakes should probably be ranked in front of rats. But the fact is that the little mouse is the eldest of the twelve zodiac signs!

    This issue is still an unsolved case. Some people say that there is probably only one explanation for today's explanation: the guy in charge of the ranking of the twelve zodiac animals is a corrupt official who is corrupt and perverts the law. He took the huge benefits of the rat and became a sex trader. , put the golden crown of first place on the head of the little mouse with no virtue or talent. This was of course just a far-fetched joke. But it is true that humans have never found a convincing explanation for this. However, after all, humans are the most intelligent advanced animals among animals. Many years after the Chinese zodiac was determined, people finally made up a folk tale, which may be self-deception and self-justification, to explain why the rat ranks first in the Chinese zodiac. This story called "The Biggest Rat" is popular in the Hunan and Hubei areas of the Central Plains:

    After the rat, ox, horse and sheep were selected as the twelve zodiac signs, the rat said: "I should be placed first." The ox, horse and sheep were unconvinced and said, "Why are you ranked first?" The rat said: " I'm older, so I have to be ranked first." The cows, horses, and others couldn't help laughing: "Are you as big as us?" The mouse said, "It doesn't count if we argue, let's let others decide." The cows, horses, sheep, etc. all laughed. Agree to have it reviewed. So they discussed a way: led by the cow, the horse, sheep, and rats walked through the street one after another to see what people thought.

    On the street, the cow came over, and people said: "This cow is very strong." The horse came over, and people said: "This horse is so tall." When the sheep came over, people said: "This sheep is very fat." ." Finally, the mouse came struttingly with its belly full. When people saw a big mouse suddenly walking out of the street, they all chased it and shouted: "What a big mouse, what a big mouse!" In this way , the cows, horses and sheep had nothing to say, leaving the mice in the first place.

    In addition, there are similar folk stories about the ranking of the twelve zodiac signs.

    There is an interesting story about how the twelve zodiac signs are arranged:

    At the beginning of chaos, when the Heavenly Stems and Earthly Branches were just established, the Jade Emperor ordered all animals from all over the world to select twelve zodiac animals according to the twelve earthly branches of Zi, Chou, Yin, Mao, Chen, Si, Wu, Wei, Shen, You, Xu and Hai.

    After the news came out, the two friends, the cat and the mouse, were alarmed. The cat said to the mouse: "Tomorrow, at five o'clock, I will go to heaven to apply for election. I have a habit of snoozing, so you have to call me out then!" The mouse kept saying, "Easy to say, easy to say!"

    But early the next morning, the unfaithful mouse got up secretly and left without saying goodbye.

    On this day, the beasts gathered in the Lingxiao Palace to start the selection. The Jade Emperor singled out twelve dragons, tigers, ox, horses, sheep, monkeys, chickens, dogs, pigs, rabbits, snakes and rats according to the differences between heaven and earth. Plant aquatic and land animals to make the twelve zodiac signs. At that time, the rooster had two beautiful horns and was also included in the beasts.

    Just when the Jade Emperor was about to arrange seats for them, he saw the black raccoon pig flashing out. Although it was clumsy and clumsy, it loved to cause trouble. It played: "The Jade Emperor has chosen the leader, the minister. I am willing to share your worries and resolve them, be a just man, and rank my brothers in order." The Jade Emperor was overjoyed when he heard this, and told the pig to judge impartially, and then withdrew from the court.

    As soon as the Jade Emperor left, the twelve zodiac signs became a mess.

    At the beginning, everyone unanimously elected the gentle and kind-hearted old scalper to be the first. Even the mighty tiger and the blue dragon respected him and expressed their agreement. However, the mouse huddled in the corner came out and protested. It said: "I am the best when it comes to big numbers. If you don't believe it, let's go to the human world and try it out and listen to the comments of the people." So, the old scalper and the mouse came to the streets to make a fuss.

    When the cow passed through the crowd, the people showed no reaction. At this time, the mouse "chiliu" suddenly climbed onto the back of the cow and set up a stake. People on the street shouted: "What a big mouse!" By the time people came to beat them with sticks, the mouse had already run away.

    The mouse came back and boasted, and all the animals defended the ox. Only the black pig was secretly happy. It felt that only in this way, it was difficult to distinguish between good and bad, big and small, so that it could look like fish and fish and benefit from it, so it picked the mouse first with a stroke of a pen. There was an old cow in the back row.

    This annoyed the tiger and the blue dragon who were nearby. They roared loudly, making all the animals tremble. All the animals hurriedly worshiped the dragon and tiger, and unanimously elected the tiger as the king of the mountains and the blue dragon as the king of fish to rule the world. The monkey wrote a gold plaque with the word "王" for the tiger and hung it on the tiger's forehead. The rooster gave two horns to Canglong. From then on, Canglong wore the laurel crown. When tigers and blue dragons gained power in the world, they were second to mice and old scalpers. At this time, another troublesome hare jumped out. It sneered and said: "Hey! In terms of appearance, I am similar to a mouse, and in terms of stature, I am bigger than a mouse. I am the guard of the Mountain King, and I should be ranked in front of the Sea King."

    When Canglong heard this, he was furious and said: "You can stop messing around. If you are not convinced, let's compete." When Black Pig heard this, he hurriedly said: "It's settled, you can compete and let the hunting dogs be your referees." member."

    Dogs and chickens have never gotten along. When he saw the chickens fawning over the dragon, he wanted to take the opportunity to tease them. He chose a track full of thorns and secretly said to the rabbit: "Your tail is too long and will hinder the competition. You have to endure the pain." Cut off love." It cut off a large section of the rabbit's tail, leaving only a bit of the tail root.

    The game started. The dragon soared through the clouds and mist, and flew to the front in a moment. However, when it ran into the bushes, its horns got caught on the vines and could not be picked off. The hare jumped eighteen times and reached the finish line in one breath.

    Regardless of the opposition of other animals, the black pig ranked the rabbit before the blue dragon and behind the tiger.

    The dog went to congratulate the hare, and he said to the hare: "If you hadn't chosen such a track and cut off your tail, you wouldn't have won today." The hare was holding the thick tail in regret, and listened to the dog's words. , curled up his three-petal mouth and said: "Humph! I won by my ability. Without you, I wouldn't be able to lose this beautiful tail!" When the dog heard this, his eyes turned red with anger, and he said: "Since you have If you are capable, let's take a walk!" The hare said arrogantly: "What's the difficulty? I'll run first. If you can catch up with me, I'll ask you to chew the bones." After saying that, he started running triumphantly. The hunting dog sharpened its claws and chased after him like an arrow. After a while, the hare was chased. It bit the hare's neck with its mouth, and said while eating: "Okay, now it's my turn to chew the bones."

    For this matter, the dog was also punished and placed at the end of the queue.

    After Canglong failed in the competition, he often complained behind his back that the pair of horns were weighing him down. The rooster felt regretful and sad when he heard it. He came to the seaside and said to the dragon: "Brother Long, since these two horns are of no benefit to you, then Please return it to me." The dragon said slyly: "Although these horns have harmed me, they can decorate my appearance. It is not difficult to return them to you. We have to wait until the sun rises over the Western Mountains and the moon sets over the East China Sea." After that, A fierce man plunged to the bottom of the sea. The innocent rooster believed it. He got up before dawn every day, looking forward to the sun coming out from the western mountains. From time to time, he stretched his neck and called out to the sea: "Brother Long! Give me back my horns..."

    From then on, the rooster lost two horns and was ranked behind.

    Only the rankings of monkeys, snakes, horses, sheep, and pigs have not yet been determined. The pig instigated again with ulterior motives: "Monkey is the king of acrobats on land, and snake is a master swimmer in water. Which of you is first and who is last?" After some discussion, they decided to conduct a folk test in the human world and perform acrobatic performances. . The green snake invited the red horse and the monkey invited the goat to help make costumes and props.

    At that time, the snake had twelve legs under its belly and walked clumsily and slowly. The red horse is a practical person who likes to help others. It quietly made a dragon's clothing for the snake out of thin skin. The dragon's clothing was made of horsehair with a checkered pattern, which was really beautiful. Hong Ma Shuang scraped a layer of grease from his belly and applied it to the dragon's clothing, making the dragon's clothing very smooth. The green snake put on a dragon robe to cover its clumsy legs, and glided instead of walking. It was both agile and beautiful.

    The goat usually hates the monkey. It feels that it jumps up and down all day long and tramples the grass, so it is not so enthusiastic about helping the monkey. The monkey wants to make up for the shortcomings of its bare buttocks, so the goat asks for help: "Brother Sheep, please You can cut me some down and let me mend my buttocks." The goat said unhappily: "It's getting cold, you know I rely on this precious garment!" The monkey had no choice but to keep his buttocks bare.

    On the day of the competition, the green snake was wrapped in dragon clothes. Sometimes it was coiled on the branches like a vine, and sometimes it was gliding on the water like a shuttle. It raised its head and neck and touched the ground with only the tip of its tail, performing various acrobatics, and people cheered. It was the monkey's turn to perform. It was seen climbing poles and swinging, and won a lot of applause. When it came to the "Hanging Bamboo Curtain" performance, the monkey curled its tail tip on the branch and performed various thrilling moves with its head down. , suddenly someone shouted: "Look! The monkey's buttocks are on fire!" People laughed loudly. The monkey always defended his shortcomings. He blushed and panicked, and hurriedly used his tail to cover his buttocks. Hearing a "plop", he fell headfirst and his face was covered with flowers.

    In this way, the green snake and the red horse came to the front, and the goat and monkey came to the back.

    After arranging the seats for all the animals, the black pig wrote himself at the front and said in his heart: "This is the time for me to get promoted and get rich and famous!" It came to the Lingxiao Palace and met the Jade Emperor. The Jade Emperor took the After taking a look at the seating chart, without saying a word, he checked off the name of the black pig at the front and filled it in at the end. So, the Jade Emperor asked Taibai Venus to arrange the names according to the earthly branches: Rat, Chou Ox, Yin Tiger, Mao Rabbit, The twelve birth dates of Chen Long, Si Snake, Wu Horse, Wei Sheep, Shen Monkey, Unitary Rooster, Xu Dog, and Hai Pig, and an edict was issued, ordering the merits of the day to be announced to the human world.

    The selection has been decided, but the Jade Emperor's anger has not subsided, and he gives Black Pig a few words:

    Useless idiots, confusing right and wrong.

    The penalty is to eat repeatedly and to be killed once a year.

    The black pig was demoted and became very angry. It lies in the den all day long and is no longer too lazy to mind its own business. However, sometimes I still feel itchy in my heart and I can't help it, so I use my mouth to thrust this way and that, making fun of things.

    The mouse returned home and danced happily stroking its three and a half whiskers, waking up the sleeping tabby cat. The cat asked: "Isn't it time yet?" The mouse said: "It's already over, and we are still competing for first place!" The mouse vividly boasted to the cat about his cleverness. The tabby cat said regretfully: "I told you again and again, why didn't you call me?" The mouse took my place instead of the tabby cat and said, "You don't have ears yourself? I asked you to go, but you still took my place." !" When the cat heard this, it was so angry that its whiskers stood upright and its almond-shaped eyes widened. It opened its sharp claws, pounced on the mouse, and ate it.

    From then on, the cat and the mouse became enemies for generations.

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