Chinese New Year Traditions and Customs

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18 Questions

What is the symbolic meaning of the red diamond shapes displayed on the entrances of Chinese homes?

To symbolize arrival of luck, prosperity, blessings, and happiness

What is the significance of the Chinese New Year's Eve meal in Chinese culture?

It is a symbol of family unity and togetherness

What is the traditional material used to make krathongs in Thailand?

A slice of the trunk of a banana tree or spider lily plant

What is the purpose of releasing krathongs on water during the Loi Krathong festival in Thailand?

To bring luck and fulfill wishes

What is the cultural significance of sticky glutinous rice in Chinese New Year celebrations?

It represents the unity and togetherness of the family

What is the significance of the fifth day of New Year in Chinese culture?

It is the day when the gods of prosperity come down from the heavens

What is the Nian in the context of Chinese New Year celebrations?

A form of Chinese colored woodblock printing for decoration

What is the purpose of setting off firecrackers during the New Year celebrations?

To scare away evil spirits and bring good fortune

What is the significance of the red color in Chinese New Year celebrations?

It represents good luck and prosperity

What is the purpose of giving red envelopes during the New Year celebrations?

To give gifts to children and unmarried adults

What is the significance of the dragon in Chinese culture?

It symbolizes prosperity, good fortune, and luck

What is the significance of taking family portraits during the New Year celebrations?

It is an important ceremony to gather the relatives together

What is the term used to describe the Chinese New Year in the twentieth century?

Spring Festival

What is the primary reason for the Chinese New Year celebration, aside from honoring ancestors and spirits?

To bring the family together for feasting

What is the significance of artistic symbols and colors during Chinese New Year celebrations?

They hold a big impact to catch the attention or interest of the people

What is the common practice adopted by the Chinese in 1912, in addition to celebrating the traditional Chinese New Year?

Observing the Western calendar New Year's Day

What is the name of the cycle that marks each New Year with the characteristics of one of the twelve zodiac animals?

The Chinese Zodiac Cycle

What is the cultural significance of food in Chinese New Year celebrations?

It is a symbol of good luck and prosperity

Study Notes

Chinese New Year Traditions

  • Most senior family member sits at the center of the family gathering.
  • Red diamond shapes symbolize arrival of luck, prosperity, blessings, and happiness, often displayed on Chinese home entrances.

Nian and Chinese New Year Decorations

  • Nian is a form of Chinese colored woodblock printing for decoration during Chinese New Year.
  • Original form of Nian was a picture of a door god, replaced every year to "say goodbye to the past and welcome the future."

Chinese New Year's Eve Meal

  • Chinese New Year's Eve meal is considered the most important dinner of the year.
  • Families gather together at a designated relative's house for dinner, often including sticky glutinous rice as a symbol of family unity.

Symbolic Colors and Shapes

  • Red is a symbol of good luck and prosperity, often used in clothing and decorations.
  • Dragons represent prosperity, good fortune, and luck in Chinese culture.

Family and Photography

  • Family portraits are taken after relatives gather, usually in front of the house or in the hall.
  • This ceremony is an important part of Chinese New Year celebrations.

Loi Krathong Festival (Thailand)

  • Loi Krathong is a festival of lights celebrated in Thailand, often in November.
  • Krathongs are lotus-shaped receptacles released on water to bring luck and fulfill wishes.
  • Traditional krathongs are made from banana tree or spider lily plant trunks, while modern ones are often made of bread or Styrofoam.

Test your knowledge of Chinese New Year traditions, including the importance of family gatherings, symbolic colors and shapes, and decorations such as Nian and Hua. Learn about the customs and practices that bring good luck and prosperity during this festive period.

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