The Secret Behind the Chinese Pregnancy Calendar

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So, you want to know if your baby is a boy or a girl, but your midwife or obstetrician can’t be sure just yet? Perhaps a ancient Chinese gender calculator can help you; sometimes the best methods are the simplest and oldest, after all.

The method is steeped in legend; no one is sure if the tale is really true, but it makes a good story, nonetheless. According to the legend, about 700 years ago, Chinese astrologists and medical practitioners created a chart was that could be used to determine baby gender with extremely high accuracy. The chart was lost for centuries, buried in a Royal Tomb near Beijing. When it was unearthed, the original was taken to the Institute of Science of Peking, where it remains. Fortunately, copies leaked out, and those have found their way around the world.

Whether the story behind the Chinese pregnancy calendar is true or not, many people believe that the chart can do a surprisingly good job of predicting baby gender from just the dates of conception.

The rows of the chart are labeled with the months of the year down the right side; across the top, a series of ages label the columns. To use the chart, find the month when the child was conceived (not born-this is vital) along the right side. Then locate the age of the mother at the time of conception along the top. Run your fingers along these two lines until you reach the point at which they intersect, a point marked with a square. Inside that square will be a “G” or “F” if it is a girl, and a “B” or “M” if it is a boy.

There are few, if any, scientific studies of the Chinese pregnancy calendar, but a scattering of informal polls and studies suggest that it will determine baby gender at a rate much higher than chance; you stand a better chance of getting the right answer than if you flipped a coin, say.

Of course, there are some tricky points.

You must know the month in which the baby was conceived. If you think the baby was conceived early in one month, but was actually conceived late in the prior month, the chart will fail to give accurate results. You can use a due date calculator and work backward, but if the likely conception date is near the beginning or end of a month, you may not be able to use the chart with complete certainty. Too bad there isn’t a Chinese conception chart!

Whether the Chinese gender calculator actually can determine baby gender, no one knows for sure. But it’s a fun way to pass the time before the big day! And if the chart proves correct, imagine the surprise of your friends and family when you tell them the gender of your baby was already known 700 years ago!

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