Famous People Born in the Year of the Goat

February 18, 2015 Updated: February 18, 2015

The Chinese New Year begins on Feb. 19th. While welcoming the Year of the Goat, we say good-bye to the Year of the Horse. In the 8th place among the 12 animals, the goat is considered to be the most artistic or creative sign of the Chinese zodiac. 

Even in the wild without food and water, a goat will persistently follow the shepherd. They appear to be gentle and mild, yet they are very strong. This is one of the characteristics of people born in the Year of the Goat.

Goat-year people are generally nice, charming, amiable, helpful, and sympathetic. Among them, there are great emperors and many famous creative and innovative people.

Li Shimin (559 – 649)

Li Shimin, known best as Emperor Taizong of Tang, was born in a Year of the Goat. He is said to have created the greatest era in Chinese history. (Yeuan Fang/Epoch Times)
Li Shimin, known best as Emperor Taizong of Tang, was born in a Year of the Goat. He is said to have created the greatest era in Chinese history. (Yeuan Fang/Epoch Times)

Li Shimin (李世民) has been regarded as the greatest emperor in Chinese history. He is also known as Emperor Taizong of the Tang Dynasty. During his reign of 23 years, from 626 to 649, he created the greatest era of Chinese history, building China into one of the largest and most powerful nations in the world. For more than a century after his death, China continued to enjoy peace and prosperity.   

Michelangelo (1475–1564)

Michelangelo, painter, sculptor, architect, and poet, is regarded as one of the most famous artists of the Italian Renaissance. His creative prowess was recognized and nurtured when he was very young and he was producing masterful works by his early twenties. Among his greatest works are the “David” and “Pieta” statues and the frescoes he painted in the Sistine Chapel.

Cao Xueqin (about 1715–1763)

Cao Xueqin (曹雪) was a Chinese writer during the Qing Dynasty. His work “Dream of the Red Mansions,” written in the latter half of the 18th century, has been hailed as one of the “Four Great Classical Novels” of Chinese literature. It is not only a great Chinese novel, but is also considered a gem of world literature.

Yue Fei (1103–1142)

Yue Fei (岳飞) is one of China’s most celebrated generals. Born at the end of the Northern Song Dynasty, Yue Fei was known not only for his military successes, but also for his high ethical standards. Widely seen as a model patriot and national hero in China, after his death, Yue Fei’s character became considered the epitome of loyalty in Chinese culture.

The painting "The Battle of Zhuxian County," depicting a battle in which Yue Fei distinguished himself. (Rolf Müller/Wikimedia Commons)
The painting “The Battle of Zhuxian County,” depicting a battle in which Yue Fei distinguished himself. (Rolf Müller/Wikimedia Commons)

Franz Liszt (1811–1886)

Franz Lizst, Hungarian composer, piano virtuoso, conductor, and teacher, was considered the greatest pianist of all time by the early 19th century. He was known for his advanced and diverse musical technique and his experimental music forms. By his early 40s, Lizst’s virtuosic talent and extensive body of musical work had made him a fortune and he became an active philanthropist. Along with being the benefactor of other composers, Lizst donated much of his performance fees to various charities and humanitarian causes. He also contributed to community projects such as the building of hospitals, schools, and churches.

Mark Twain (1835–1910)

Mark Twain, whose real name was Samuel Clemens, was a famous American author, journalist, lecturer, and humourist and has been called the “father of American literature.” He wrote “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” in 1876. Twain finished the sequel, “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” in 1885, which is regarded as one of the greatest American novels. He was interested in science, was a friend to Nikola Tesla, and has three patents to his name. He was also interested in parapsychology, having predicted his brother’s and his own death.

Thomas Alva Edison (1847–1931)

A highly productive American inventor and entrepreneur, Thomas Edison gave the world new technologies through devices like the electric light bulb, the phonograph, and the motion picture camera. He also developed business acumen at a very early age, eventually founding 14 companies to include General Electric. Edison held 1,093 patents in the U.S. and Europe and his inventions impacted future technologies from which telecommunications evolved.

Bill Gates (1955–)

Bill Gates is the co-founder of Microsoft and he has served as a long term-CEO and chairman of the world’s largest PC software company. He is one of the best-known entrepreneurs of the personal computer revolution. Gates is consistently ranked in the Forbes list of the world’s wealthiest people and he has donated large amounts of money to various charitable organizations and scientific research programs.

Julia Roberts (1967–)

Julia Roberts is an American actress and film producer and is one of the top box-office earners in Hollywood. Coming to public attention with her moving performance in “Steel Magnolias,” she became a star through such films as “Pretty Woman” and “Erin Brockovich.” Roberts has won many awards, including several Golden Globes and an Academy Award for Best Actress. She supports several charities and participates in efforts to raise public awareness about issues like Rett Syndrome, climate change, and renewable energy.

Other famous Goat people include the poet Lord Byron, writer and social critic Charles Dickens, American folk artist Grandma Moses, knighted actor Laurence Olivier, science-fiction novelist Isaac Asimov, the Beatles’ George Harrison, CEO visionary Steve Jobs, and broadcast journalist Barbara Walters, just to name a few.