The sexagenary cycle of heavenly stems and earthly branches is known as 六十花甲 in Mandarin, pronounced as liu shi hua jia.

Among the 10 heavenly stems are 5 yin and 5 yang. And among the 12 earthly branches are 6 yin and 6 yang.

When paired with each other, each character must be of the same polarity. Which means that only yang stems can link up with yang branches and only yin stems can be paired with yin branches.

This implies that there can be 30 yin pairs and 30 yang pairs. Making up a total of 60 possible combinations.

At this point, do note that a bazi consist of 4 pairs which are individually known as pillars.

To put the couplets of characters in order for the sexagenary calendar system, we start the first year of the cycle with the first stem Jia and first branch Zi. Then follow the sequence of stems and branches for the second year, and so on.

The result is the below table of sexagenary cycle.

1-10 11-20 21-30 31-40 41-50 51-60
甲子
JiaZi
H1, E1
Metal
甲戌
JiaXu
H1, E11
Fire
甲申
JiaShen
H1, E9
Water
甲午
JiaWu
H1, E7
Metal
甲辰
JiaChen
H1, E5
Fire
甲寅
JiaYin
H1, E3
Water
乙丑
YiChou
H2, E2
Metal
乙亥
YiHai
H1, E11
Fire
乙酉
YiYou
H2, E10
Water
乙未
YiWei
H2, E8
Metal
乙巳
YiSi
H2, E6
Fire
乙卯
YiMao
H2, E4
Water
丙寅
BingYin
H3, E3
Fire
丙子
BingZi
H3, E1
Water
丙戌
BingXu
H3, E11
Earth
丙申
BingShen
H3, E9
Fire
丙午
BingWu
H3, E7
Water
丙辰
BingChen
H3, E5
Earth
丁卯
DingMao
H4 E4
Fire
丁丑
DingChou
H4, E2
Water
丁亥
DingHai
H4, E12
Earth
丁酉
DingYou
H4, E10
Fire
丁未
DingWei
H4, E8
Water
丁巳
DingSi
H4, E6
Earth
戊辰
WuChen
H5, E5
Wood
戊寅
WuYin
H5, E3
Earth
戊子
WuZi
H5, E1
Fire
戊戌
WuXu
H5, E11
Wood
戊申
WuShen
H5, E9
Earth
戊午
WuWu
H5, E7
Fire
己巳
JiSi
H6, E6
Wood
己卯
JiMao
H6, E4
Earth
己丑
JiChou
H6, E2
Fire
己亥
JiHai
H6, E12
Wood
己酉
JiYou
H6, E10
Earth
己未
JiWei
H6, E8
Fire
庚午
GengWu
H7, E7
Earth
庚辰
GengChen
H7, E5
Metal
庚寅
GengYin
H7, E3
Wood
庚子
GengZi
H7, E1
Earth
庚戌
GengXu
H7, E11
Metal
庚申
GengShen
H7, E9
Wood
辛未
XinWei
H8, E8
Earth
辛巳
XinSi
H8, E6
Metal
辛卯
XinMao
H8, E4
Wood
辛丑
XinChou
H8, E2
Earth
辛亥
XinHai
H8, E12
Metal
辛酉
XinYou
H8, E10
Wood
壬申
RenShen
H9, E9
Metal
壬午
RenWu
H9, E7
Wood
壬辰
RenChen
H9, E5
Water
壬寅
RenYin
H9, E3
Metal
壬子
RenZi
H9, E1
Wood
壬戌
RenXu
H9, E11
Water
癸酉
GuiYou
H10, E10
Metal
癸未
GuiWei
H10, E8
Wood
癸巳
GuiSi
H10, E6
Water
癸卯
GuiMao
H10, E4
Metal
癸丑
GuiChou
H10, E2
Wood
癸亥
GuiHai
H10, E12
Water

Legend can be found here.

The element described in each grid in the above table is the element the pair of characters becomes when combined according to the musical scale concept of 5 elements (納音五行).

In 2019, we are in the 36th year of the current cycle, which is the year of Ji Hai.

At the end of the 60th year, the cycle repeats itself.

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