The Year of the Tiger 2022
2022 wird das Jahr des Tigers sein, entsprechend dem 12-Jahres-Zyklus der Tierkreiszeichen, auf Koreanisch 12 Ganji genannt. As 2021 drew to a close, New Year calendars and mural paintings of the wild animals were sold in stores across the country. This tradition is not to be overlooked.
Personality traits of the tiger in the zodiac
Tigers are majestic, impressive and wild creatures. They are also stealthy and determined hunters. The personality of the tiger reflects all these qualities. People of this zodiac sign are characterized by courage and leadership qualities. They like to do things their own way, and when they set a goal, they will do anything to achieve it. However, their incredible zest for life also has some downsides. Tigers tend to be impulsive, rebellious, and hot-tempered. When the Tiger throws a tantrum, that anger can spread to innocent bystanders. Tiger years can therefore be very explosive times.
Tiger and magpie, David and Goliath
In Korean folk painting, tiger images, especially tiger and magpie, are very popular. This is because they have strong Korean characteristics.
In the image of tiger and magpie, the magpie is a symbol of good news, and the tiger is a symbol of a protector who protects from evil. Sometimes a leopard appears instead of a tiger. The Chinese pronunciation of leopard (豹) is the same as bao (報), , which means to inform. Magpie means joy (喜),so drawing a magpie leopard means to convey joy (報喜).
The mural of tiger and magpie could be a meaningful gift for the Year of the Tiger 2022.
However, the folk tale of the tiger and the magpie was not limited to the symbol of happiness and protector. To the original symbol was added a satire that criticized the social absurdity. In this image of tiger and magpie, a tiger that should be feared is drawn comically, and a small magpie appears with panache. The tiger is far from being the king of animals. There are many kinds of tigers, such as the blunt and ridiculous "Baboho tiger," such as a sharp-headed tiger, a cat-like tiger, a smoking tiger, a neutered tiger, and a tiger looking out for a magpie.
The tiger here symbolizes an official who commits tyranny with his power, and the magpie stands for the powerless citizens. Criticism of society, especially dissatisfaction with the poor treatment of the ruling class, is expressed allegorically and humorously in folk tales.
In these paintings the sense of equality of the common people is expressed, which wants to downgrade an authoritarian being to an ordinary person like itself. In fact, the magpie becomes more and more proud and even opposes the tiger or ignores its very existence. When the tiger attacks, the magpie flies away. From this point of view, the true protagonist in the folktale Magpie-Tiger is not a tiger but a magpie. It is a paradox found only in Korean folktales that a magpie plays the role of the master in a tiger picture.
Interestingly, a painting depicting the battle between the young boy David and the giant general Goliath also became popular in the West during the Renaissance as a symbol of Protestants (Protestants) fighting against Catholic authority. This painting of Tiger and magpie could therefore be a Korean version of David and Goliath.