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Chinese 24 Solar Terms


Solar Terms is a calendar of twenty-four periods and climate to govern agricultural arrangements in ancient China and functions even now.


These solar terms have meaningful titles. Some of them reflect the change of seasons such as the Start of Spring, the Start of Summer, the Start of Autumn, and the Start of Winter; some embody the phenomena of climate like the Awakening of Insects, and some indicate the change of climate like Rain Water, Grain Rain, Minor Heat, Major Heat, and so on.


Each of these twenty-four solar terms suggests the position of the sun. In each month there are often two solar terms; the first one is generally named 'Jie Qi' and the other one 'Zhong Qi'. Their dates are mirrored by the Gregorian calendar, so we find that during the first half of a year 'Jie Qi' is around the 6th day of a solar month, 'Zhong Qi' around the 21st; in the second half of a year, 'Jie Qi' is around the 8th and 'Zhong Qi' around the 23rd.


The 24 solar terms were first used in China, and now are followed in many other parts of the world. In China, the 24 solar terms were created thousands of years ago to guide agricultural production. They also reflect China’s rich history through the seasonal festivals, special foods, cultural ceremonies, family gatherings and even healthy living tips that correspond with each solar term. To learn about the history and continuing celebrations of China’s solar terms is to embrace a deeper understanding of China’s fascinating past and present.        


List of the 24 Solar Terms:



Solar Terms 

Month and Date          

Start of Spring


Feb. 4th


Rain Water


Feb. 19th


Awakening of Insects


Mar. 6th


Spring Equinox  


Mar. 21st


Clear and Bright


Apr. 5th


Grain Rain   


Apr. 20th


Start of Summer




Grain Buds 




Grain in Ear    



Jun. 6th

Summer Solstice  



Minor Heat                 


Jul. 7th


Major Heat

Jul. 23rd


Start of Autumn    


Aug. 7th


End of Heat


Aug. 23th

White Dew


Sep. 8th


Autumn Equinox White Dew


Sep. 23rd


Cold Dew


Oct. 8th


Frost's Descent 


Oct. 23rd

Start of Winter

Nov. 7th


Minor Snow

Nov. 22nd


Major Snow

Dec. 7th


Minor Cold

Dec. 22nd


Major Cold

Jan. 5th


Winter Solstice

Jan. 20th



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