The Chinese Years of the Snake are
1905, 1917, 1929, 1941, 1953,
1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013.

(Editor's Note: This article was written at the beginning of 2001, but a lot of the information can also be applied to other Snake years, such as 2013.)

Coiling and hissing at us came the Chinese Year of the Snake on January 24, 2001. The Snake, or in Chinese "she" is a cunning and smart animal who is resourceful and has supernatural powers. Traditionally, the Snake has some characteristics in common with the animal of the preceding year, the Dragon.

Characteristics of Those Born in the Year of the Snake...

People born in the Year of the Snake tend to be deep thinkers, philosophers, and since they are so good with money, often become financiers. Snake people are charming, and like the Dragon, attract attention wherever they go. But, unlike the Dragon, the Snake native tends to be a big less extroverted and more soft spoken. The Snake also tends to be seen as a more cultured person and loves classical books, great food, good wine, etc. Their social skills are highly refined.

Although people born in the Year of the Snake can be physically strong, much like the Boa Constrictor who can squeeze its prey to death with its strong muscles, the "human" Snake is more prone to winning through various acts of finesse. However, much like a real snake, the person born in this year will also strike figuratively, from odd angles, and is more prone to use an angular or indirect method of winning than a direct frontal attack.

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This goes along with another known tendency of the Snake and that is toward deceptiveness. The Snake will tend to see telling "little white lies" more as a technique or weapon in their armament to get things done, and will tend to see the use of untruths more as a matter of tactics rather than as an ethical or moral consideration.

Love them or hate them, real snakes are fascinating creatures that tend to bring out extremes of reaction from people. People often either recoil in horror at being presented with a snake, or, as is the case with children who are shown harmless snakes in school, are drawn to petting the cool, smooth scales of these graceful animals.

Part of the fascination of snakes is their method of movement as they slide and glide their way along life. Along with this, people born in the year of the Snake are very sexual, and very sensual persons. Some may even accuse them of being "oversexed", but for the Snake, it is just following basic natural instincts to what for them, is a natural degree.

Snake people are charming and romantic, but can also be extremely jealous and they may continue this attitude over mates who are no longer with them. Part of this involves the fact that Snakes have great egos and while losing a mate to another can be a devastating blow to a normal ego, but it is almost intolerable to the Snake. The Snake person needs approval from others and this may be a surprise because the Snake may seem aloof or a bit cool, but this is just the exterior. The Snake person needs to find acceptance from his or her social and business contacts.


When we look at a list of some of the famous persons born in the Year of the Snake, we are struck by the number of Snakes, who, for better or worse, have had a great impact on their country. For example, communist revolutionary leader Mao Tse Tung was a Snake native, and so was Indira Gandhi.

In regard to the United States, two Snake natives, ironically who both had a great impact on civil rights, and who were both assassinated in office, were John F. Kennedy (as was Jackie Kennedy Onassis) and Abraham Lincoln. Industry giants Howard Hughes, Henry Ford II, as well as J. Paul Getty were born in the Year of the Snake.

Musical composers, artists, and other performers are well represented by Picasso, Carole King, Brahms, Ann-Margaret, and Greta Garbo.


(Editor's Note: Since this article was written at the beginning of 2001, the following paragraph refers more specifically to 2001 (aka the year of the World Trade Center attack) though a lot of the information can also be applied to other Snake years, such as 2013.)

This year is going to be difficult to predict. The Year of the Dragon overall, was a fairly prosperous, expansive year, but as we journeyed to the Dragon's tail, i.e. the end of the year, disturbing trends toward possible recession started arising. Both dragons and snakes are traditionally seen as serpentine creatures whose body twists and turns. Snakes are very undulating creatures, but I fear that it won't be until late Spring/early Summer of 2001 before the Snake starts waking up from the sluggishness of winter.

In the Spring, Snakes become more romantic, more energetic, and thus, I expect the mid to late Spring to be perhaps the most optimistic part of the coming year. I believe that we will see significant swings up and down throughout the year.

Politically, we have a new president (George W. Bush) and, in agreement with the traditional view of the Snake, people will perceive an air of distrust, an air of secrecy, and a certain air of authoritarianism in governmental affairs, almost as if the control of public affairs has slipped or slithered out of the people's hands.

Expect Great Upheavals and Undulations During the Year

Snakes love basking in the sun and become more frisky and active in the Spring. Thus, although we can expect great upheavals and undulations during the year, and a lot of things will be happening covertly and underground, we should expect that, as the yearly cycle follows its repetitive pattern of re-growth and regeneration, the snake may shed its old skin and a certain sense of renewal may arise around this time.

I feel that the best time for financial investment will be in the late Spring or Early Summer. Overall though, in the Year of the Snake, people would be wise to be conservative with their money and keep their own counsel.

In general, most snakes do not go out of their way to interfere with the lives of men and women, but when they feel threatened, snakes will strike out with a vengeance. Thus, the watchwords for this year will be to watch your money, pay special attention to any internal health problems, and try to stay on good terms with your neighbors and your surroundings, but heck, that's good counsel for any year.

Compatibility with other signs.

Snakes with:



Better be friends than lovers.


This union can be a good one.


Difficult to see what they could see in each other.


Not very great chance of harmony


It's possible, but the dragon must be able to get used to the Snake's quick and autocratic style.


Opposites attract, similars repel


These two are strongly attracted to each other.


With work, these two may be able to work it out.


This would be a lively match, as long as the monkey is quick enough and cautious.


Generally, this is thought of as a good match. One thing is true, they wouldn't have to worry about money.


They may get along. Dogs are fascinated by Snakes, but this match could take a great deal of work.


Snakes and Pigs really should stay separate from each other.

Gong Hay Fot Choy! (Greetings of Riches for the New Year)

About The Author

Dr. John Raymond Baker, D.C. is a licensed Chiropractic doctor in Austin, Texas. He describes himself as a follower of Taoism and Huna, and has, for the past 27 years, been involved in the Chinese internal martial arts. His primary web site is : and e-mail is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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