Essay Example on Spring festival also known as Chinese new year

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Spring festival also known as Chinese new year is one of China's most important festivals It is quite similar to Christmas of western countries There are family reunions during the spring festival Traditionally the spring festival falls on the first day of the first lunar month The spring festival has history of more than 4000 years A popular legend about Nian a fierce monster Nian usually preyed on people on the night before the new year s day One day an old man challenged Nian saying I hear you are quite capable but can you swallow other beasts of prey on earth instead of humans who are no match for your strength The villagers also made a discovery that the monster Nian was frightened of red color and bright flames Therefore the doors were painted red fires were lit in the doorway and loud noises made throughout the day This tradition has continued with fire crackers being used during spring festival The 23rd day of the twelfth lunar month is called the preliminary eve People offer sacrifices to the kitchen god and families share delicious food together After the preliminary eve the preparation begins in earnest for the new year which is referred to as seeing the new year in Before the new year finally comes houses are cleaned thoroughly including clothes bed clothes and utensils 



Decoration is an important feature of the Chinese new year just like Christmas Traditional Chinese paper cuts with detailed intricate patterns are a traditional item for decoration They are put in wall frames or pressed under glass table tops Spring couplets are common these are mostly pasted on doors wishes for the new year are expressed this varies among people Pictures of the gods of door and wealth are posted on doors believed to ward off evil spirits and welcome peace and abundance The Chinese character fu meaning blessing happiness is important It is most times pasted upside down when it is pasted that way it is pronounced as fudaole which means blessings for wealth have arrived Two big red lanterns are hung on both sides of the front door On spring festival eve a sumptuous dinner is served including chicken fish tofu in Chinese the pronunciations fu yu doufu means auspicious abundant blessed In northern China jiaozi i e dumplings are eaten as people believe jiaozi means bidding farewell to the old and ushering in the new The shape of the dumplings resemble that of gold nuggets back in ancient China People eating it wish for money and treasure Meanwhile in the southern part of China niangao new year cake made of glutinous rice flour is eaten Niangao means higher and higher one year after another 



Finally on the new year s day everyone dress in their finest clothes the elders give the children money in red envelopes In China red symbolizes happiness prosperity and goodluck The money is called is called yasuiqian this is known as lucky money The money is believed to assure the children will grow healthy in the new year Activities such as lion dancing dragon dance lantern festival and temple fairs are performed NEW YAM FESTIVAL New yam festival known as Iri Ji is an important festival in Nigeria It is usually celebrated between August and October It is an ancient tradition The aim of the festival is to officially present the newly harvested yams to the gods and ancestors to thank them for a fruitful planting season Yams are very important in Nigerian culture In the ancient times the number of yams that a man grows indicates his wealth and rank within the society Additionally the cultivation of yams is associated with masculinity During the festival people returm to their hometowns families come together to celebrate the new yam festival 



Also gaily dressed married women return to their hometowns with animals such as goats fowls and sometimes cows to celebrate the new yam festival with their family members The evening that precedes the start of the festival all old yams from the previous planting season are destroyed It is believed that the new planting season must begin with tasty fresh yams During the duration of the festival only dishes made out of yam are served Every family is expected to kill an animal as a sacrifice to the gods so that they can receive guidance throughout the next farming period The festival lasts for three days On the first day there is the Igo Nne celebration of dead mothers Then on the second day is Igo Nna celebration of dead fathers Finally on the third day the oldest man in the community offers the yam and prayers to the gods deities and ancestors then eats the first yam before giving others A great feast is prepared local dishes such as Ji Awayi yam porridge roasted yam steamed yam with red oily sauce prepared with fresh palm oil Utazi cayfish are eaten There are also dances performed such as masquerade and atilogwu dances


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