The Year of the Rat 4" Tile. The Chinese lunar calendar is over 5000 years old. it is based upon the rise of the new moon. Each year in the 12-year cycle is named after a different animal. The Chinese believe a person's character is influenced by the animal which was ruling the year they were born. The year of the rat correlates with birth years 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, and 2020. They are most compatible with the Monkey & Dragon; they are wise, passionate and Imaginative. These tiles are hand-painted in our Hanapepe gallery so images may vary slightly to pictures shown. Hang or use as a trivet.