China Information
About China
Chinese Languages
Chinese Calendar
Lucky numbers
Chinese Religions
China History
Chinese Embassies
China Maps
China Tours
China Highlight Tour
Silk Road Exploration
Historic & Cultural Tours
Tibet Lhasa Travel
Lijiang Shangri-La Tour
Yangtze River Cruise
Popular City Tours
China Top City
beijing tours
from $259
Shanghai Tours
from $96
Xian Tours
from $75
Lhasa Tours
from $289
Urumqi Tours
from $249
chongqing tours
from $189
Guilin Tours
from $195
Guiyang Tours
from $219
Kunming Tours
from $219
Home >> China-Information >>

Lucky numbers

Lucky numbers are based on Chinese words that sound similar to other Chinese words. The numbers 6, 8, and 9 are believed to have auspicious meanings because their names sound similar to words that have positive meanings.

The number 1 can represent unity.

The number 2 is a good number in Chinese culture. There is a Chinese saying "good things come in pairs". It is common to use double symbols in product brandnames, e.g. double happiness, double coin, double elephants etc.

The number 3 sounds like the word "Éú (sanng)", meaning "life", and is thus considered a lucky number.

Although the number 4 is considered unlucky by most Chinese (see Unlucky section for details), it is considered lucky in some local Chinese dialects where it is a homophone with the word "ÊÂ(job, business, or task)". When the number 4 is encountered during a celebration, people would often remark "ËÄËÄÈçÒâ", which would also refer to "ÊÂÊÂÈçÒâ" (Everything done as wished).

The number 5 is associated with the Five elements (Chinese philosophy), and in turn was historically associated with the Emperor of China. For example, the Tiananmen gate, being the main thoroughfare to the Forbidden City, has five arches.

The number 6, pronounced "liu" in Mandarin, sounds like the word for "flowing", "smooth" or "slippery" which can mean "everything goes smoothly".

The number 666 can be seen prominently in many shop windows across the country, and people there often pay extra to get a mobile phone number including this string of digits. Paradoxically, that number is considered to be demonic in Western culture, as it is the Number of the Beast.

The number 7 symbolizes "togetherness". This is shown in the Chinese mythology of Cowherd and Weaver Girl. The seventh day of the seventh month is The Night of Sevens. However, the mythology of Cowherd and Weaver Girl is a tragedy, since they could only meet up with each other once every 1000 years, therefore 7 is often known as a sad, tragic, and unlucky number in the northern Chinese tradition. Also, the 7th month of the year is known as the Ghost Month, and therefore 7 is often linked with fate, destiny, and supernatural occurrences.

The word for "eight" (°Ë£¬°Æ) in Mandarin sounds similar to the word which means "prosper" or "wealth" (·¢ - short for "·¢²Æ"). In regional dialects the words for "eight" and "fortune" are also similar.

The number 9, being the greatest of single-digit numbers, was historically associated with the Emperor of China; the Emperor's robes often had nine dragons, and Chinese mythology held that the dragon has nine children.
Moreover, the number 9 (jiu) sounds like the word for "longlasting", and as such is often used in weddings.

While 13 in Western culture is a bad number, in Chinese, 13 is a good number because in Cantonese, 13 is close to "ʵÉú" (will/should/will certainly live), so when faced with uncertainties, this is a comforting number. Of course, that makes 14 bad, because 14 is close to "ʵËÀ" (will/should/will certainly die/fail).

Unlucky Numbers

Number 4 (ËÄ; pinyin sì) is considered an unlucky number in Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese and Japanese cultures because it sounds like the word "death" (ËÀ pinyin s¨«). In East Asia, some buildings do not have a 4th floor. (Compare with the American practice of some buildings not having a 13th floor because 13 is considered unlucky.) In Hong Kong, some high-rise residential buildings miss ALL floor numbers with "4", e.g. 4, 14, 24, 34 and all 40-49 floors. As a result, a building with 50th as the highest floor may actually have 36.

Number 14 is considered to be one of the unluckiest numbers in Chinese culture. Although 14 is usually said as "shi si," which sounds like "ten die", it can also be said as "yi si" or "yao si", literally "one four".

Although it can represent "me" (ÎÒ,pinyin w¨¯), it is usually associated with "not" (Mandarin ÎÞ,pinyin wú). If used for the negative connotation it can become good by using it with a negative. 54 being "not die" or "no death". If used for the positive it can be used as a possessive. 528 is a way of saying "no easy fortune for me".
Seven is considered spiritual or ghostly. The seventh month of the Chinese calendar is also called the "Ghost Month". See Ghost Festival for more detail. During this month, the gates of hell are said to be open so ghosts and spirits are permitted to visit the living realm. It is not commonly associated with luck.



Home | China Attractions | China Hotels | About Us | Contact Us | Site Maps
China Highlight Tour | Historic & Cultural Tour | Silk Road Exploration | Tibet Lhasa Travel | Lijiang-Shangrila Tour | Yangtze River Cruise
Beijing Tours | Chongqing Tours | Guilin Tours | Guiyang Tours | Kunming Tours | Lhasa Tours | Shanghai Tours | Urumqi Tours | Xian Tours
Copyright 1992-2018 All Rights Reserved
China Travel Guide