Thursday, January 5, 2012

Lunar Year of the Dragon

The stars in the orient, flourishing Macao
The Dragon augurs the year of prosperity

“Stars (means dragon, symbol of the Emperor) go to the orient, the North Country is blessed with the arrival of the Emperor” – A poem by Yan Yannian quoted in “Literary Selections” (Wenxuan).
“The orient direction is called Spring” - Li Shan quoted in “The Book of Rites”
“Who rules with morality wins the support of the people is like the moon surrounded by the stars” - Quoted in ‘Political Ethics from the Analects of Confucius” (Lunyu — Weizheng).
“Dragon chant presents with flute like flowing the water” - The famous Chinese poet Li Bai quoted in the poem “Recreation Poems for Imperial Palace”.

The first characters of the second verse of the couplet means the dragon sings auspicious tunes.

The general idea of the couplet is that the star blessing us appearing in the orient means the flourish of Macao and the tune of Dragon Chant playing augurs the prosperity of Macao.

Author: Lao Wali
Translation: C&C — Translation Center. Ltd.

About the “Five Dragons”

There are two kinds of theories about the attributes of the Five Elements in each year: one saying is dependent on the “Heavenly Stems” while the other is based on the sound retainers of the Five Elements, which are calculated by “Heavenly Stems” and the “Earthly Branches”.

If calculated by “Heavenly Steins”, the dragon’s nature for the Five Elements is as follows:

“Water Dragon”: Renchen Year (Ren belongs to Water) 2012, 1952
“Metal Dragon”: Gengchen Year (Geng belongs to Metal) 2000, 1940
“Earth Dragon”: Wuchen Year (Wu belongs to Earth) 1988, 1928
“Fire Dragon”: Bingchen Year (Bing belongs to Fire) 1976. 1916
“Wood Dragon”: Jiachen Year (Jia belongs to Wood) 1964. 1904

If based on the sound retainers of the Five Elements, the dragon’s nature for the Five Elements and their mnemonics are as follows:

“Water Dragon”: Renchen Year (Rendsen - running water) 2012, 1952
“Metal Dragon”: Gengchen Year (Gengchen - wax metal) 2000, 1940
“Wood Dragon”: Wuchen Year (Wuchen - forest wood) 1988, 1928
“Earth Dragon”: Bingchen Year (Bingchen - earth in sand) 1976, 1916
“Fire Dragon”: Jiachen Year (Jiachen - fire of buddha) 1964, 1904

The Macao Post adopted the “Heavenly Stems” calculation method lo figure out the nature of the “Five Elements” in the fifth issue of the third series of Chinese Zodiac stamps “Lunar Year of the Dragon”. This year, the dragon’s nature from the “Five Elements” is water, so dragon with the background of Chinese traditional ink painting becomes the main character of the five stamps.

“Water Dragon” - The Water Dragon is a kind of “Marine Dragon”, which is a member of the popular dragons and the along with the current dragons. The character of the Water Dragon is to drift with the tide and his career also goes agreeable. He is circumspection and has good relations with others, especially with those of opposite sex. However, he sometimes is excessively scrupulous in conducting himself.

“Metal Dragon” - The Metal Dragon is a kind of “Rising Dragon”, which belongs to perfectionism dragons. He is creative and has varied ideas. He is more idealist than doer, loving to be outstanding and upholding the torch of love. The Metal Dragon has a straightforward personality and loves to live by his own definitions.

“Earth Dragon” - The Earth Dragon is a kind of “Heaven Dragon”. which belongs to philanthropic dragons. With more sensitive affections, he loves the world and Ilie people. He is diligent and enterprising in work, however, frequently ignores cost and benefit in practical business.

“Fire Dragon” - The Fire Dragon is a kind of “Ground Dragon”, which is a member of born-beautiful dragons. With born-beautiful appearance and outspoken personality, he has good relations with friends and with those of opposite sex. He is good at considering the situations, however, cannot appreciate other’s characters and abilities or offers them suitable positions.

“Wood Dragon” - The Wood Dragon is a kind of “Conqueror Dragon”, which is the head of all dragons. Fie is an outstanding talent, rich of challenging spirit. Though he shows his inherent character of imperturbation and doesn’t like to show off, however, his pearlescent influence
still attracts others.

Author: Lawrence Lei
Translation: C&C — Translation Center, Ltd.

The Stamps:
The Sheetlet:
The Souvenir Sheet:
The FDC with Stamps:
The FDC with Souvenir Sheet:
The Post Mark:

Dados Técnicos/Technical Data
Valor dos Selos/Stamps Value: set of 5 stamps of 1.50, 1.50, 1.50, 1.50 and 5.00 Patacas
Folhas Miniatura com cinco séries/Minisheets with five sets
Valor do Bloco/Souvenir Sheet Value: 12.00 Patacas
Desenho/Design: Wilson Chi Ian Lam
Data emissão/Issue date: 05.01.2012
Impressor/Printer: Sprintpak, Australia
Impressão/Print: Offset Lithography with Embossing and Hot Foil Stamping with Silver and Holographic
Papel/Paper: Security Paper
Selos por folha/Stamps per sheet: 25
Dimensão/Size: 35 x 35 mm
Picotagem/Perforation: 14.28 x 14.28

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