Chinese calendar is also called as lunisolar calendar which includes the essentials of a lunar calendar with the basics of solar calendar. This calendar is not only followed in China but also in several other Asian cultures. Sometimes, even the western culture referred this calendar. In many parts of Asia Gregorian calendar is still used to know about the day to day behavior but Chinese calendar is also of a great use as it helps to know about the Traditional East Asian holidays such as spring festival also known as Lunar new year and the Duan Wu Festival celebrated in China and also the mid- autumn Festival.
Moreover Chinese calendar is also used for the purpose of astrology like determining the auspicious date for a wedding and any other good work to be done in near future. The phases of the moon can also be determined as it follows the cycle of the moon once in a month. This year in Chinese calendar is considered to be the year of Earth Rat starting from 7 February, 2008 to 25 January, 2009.
The earliest facts of the Chinese calendar is originated on the oracle bones in late second millennium BC of the Shang dynasty which give the impression that the lunisolar year consists of 12 months, with likely intercalary of thirteen, or at times even fourteen, added empirically to avoid the calendar flow.
For recording the day, Sexagenary cycle was already in use. In that period the year starts on the first new moon. The spring and the autumn chronicles provide the better way to understand the type of calendar used in the Zhou dynasty.
In a year there were usually 12 months which consists of 29 and 30 days alternatively but from time to time an additional was also added to come up to the flow between the calendar and the actual moon cycle and also at the end of the year intercalary months were also added randomly. Later on Gregorian calendar was adopted as an official on January 1912 but the general public was still using the traditional calendar.