The Chinese sexagenary cycle (Chinese: 六十花甲; pinyin: liùshí huājiǎ), also known as the Stems-and-Branches (Chinese: 干支; pinyin: gānzhī), is a cycle of sixty terms used for recording days or years. It appears, as a means of recording days, in the first Chinese written texts, the Shang dynasty oracle bones from the late second millennium BC. Its use to record years began around the middle of the 3rd century B.C. The cycle, and variations on it, have been an important part of historical calendrical systems in other, Chinese-influenced Asian states, notably those of Japan, Korea and Vietnam. This traditional method of numbering days and years no longer has any significant role in modern Chinese time keeping or the official calendar. However, the sexagenary cycle continues to have a role in contemporary Chinese astrology and fortune telling.
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... purposes stems are also necessary, and the months are named using the sexegenary cycle following a five-year cycle starting in a jiǎ (甲 1st) or jǐ (己 6th) year ... following the cycle ...
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