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Chinese New Year 2015 - year of the goat or sheep? You decide

Goat. Sheep. Goat. Sheep. Goat. Sheep. 

Which one is it?

This year's lunar new year, which falls on Feb 19, marks the start of the Chinese zodiac symbol "yang".

And according to Chinese folklorists, the answer is both. 

This is mainly due to the broad definition of the symbol, "yang".

Meaning, the new year could belong to any member of the caprinae subfamily - goats (yang), sheep "soft yang", and even yellow gazelles "yellow yang".   

"This 'yang' is fictional. It does not refer to any specific kind (of sheep or goat)," said Zhao Shu, a researcher with the Beijing Research Institute of Culture and History. 

You decide

A quick search on Google in English would show that the phrase "year of the sheep" appears most common. 

However a search in French reveals the opposite, in favour of the goat. 

But for most, the decision is simple - they simply choose the animal they feel possess their own favoured qualities. 

So here's a list of personality traits - the good and the bad - for both goats and sheep. Have fun deciding!

Goats 

PHOTO: Facebook

Good traits: Elegant, charming, artistic, gifted and fond of nature, highly creative and delicate. 

On top of that, goats also display strong inner resilience and exceptional defensive instincts. 

Neutral traits:  They prefer not to be in the limelight and tend to keep to themselves.

Bad traits: Insecure, sensitive and lazy. 

Goats tend to be a little more emotional when it comes to relationships and demonstrate laziness sometimes. 

They are also more likely to refrain from confrontation and avoid taking the less popular stand in a conflict. 

Sheep

PHOTO: Twitter

Good traits: Tender, polite, filial, clever, kind-hearted, wise, gentle and compassionate.

Additionally, sheep take a special interest towards art and beauty.

They are also compassionate individuals and are economical in their spending.     

Bad traits: Shy, pessimistic, moody, indecisive, over-sensitive and weak-willed.

Source: AFP, Travel China Guide, China Highlights, The New York Times

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