Google Marks Lunar New Year with Illustration of Playful Monkeys

Happy Lunar New Year!

Lunar New Year is celebrated in many countries such as China, Korea, Mongolia, and Vietnam. Though not officially used in the United States, the lunar calendar plays an important role in global timekeeping.
Screen shot of home page on Feb. 8, 2016 on a PC.

The calendar is marked by the Shēngxiào or Chinese Zodiac, which is used to predict health, wealth, and compatibility. You’ve probably heard of the animal designations prescribed to various years: rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, pig or dog. Each year is also associated with one of five fixed elements: wood, fire, earth, metal, or water.

2016 is the year of the Fire Monkey, which is the 9th in the 12 year cycle of the zodiac. The monkey sign represents quick-wittedness and smarts, and people born under it are thought to be adaptable and flexible in their thinking.

For today, Doodler Alyssa Winans illustrated a family of monkeys in the traditional fiery red which matches the lucky envelopes families give and receive on Lunar New Year — and the explosions of the firecrackers.