I've heard it referred to as Year of the ram, goat and sheep.
Excerpts from Chinese new year: Is it the year of the ram, sheep or goat?
- This confusion is caused by Mandarin Chinese character yang: 羊
- Its apparent meaning is 'horned animal' — an encompassing term that doesn't really help journalists, event planners and new year celebrators decide which member of the Caprinae family they're supposed to be honouring.
- Some experts, including Professor Ho Che-wah at Chinese University, trace this mix-up back to BC, when the 12-year cycle Chinese zodiac was first introduced during the Han dynasty.
- That mystifying yang character, found on bones used for divination, was interpreted as an animal with two horns and a pointy face.