CCTV-News / CNTV
Winter Solstice Festival
December 23, 2011
Chinese celebrates Winter Solstice festival
12-23-2011 09:20 BJT
The Winter Solstice is not only one of the 24 seasonal division points but also a traditional festival for Chinese people. This year's Winter Solstice festival occurs on Thursday of this week.
The Winter Solstice occurs in the northern hemisphere when the sun reaches its most southerly declination.
As early as 25,00 years ago, around the Spring and Autumn Period, China had determined the point of Winter Solstice by observing movements of the sun with a sundial. It's the earliest of the 24 seasonal division points. After the Winter Solstice, daytime will become longer and longer.
As ancient Chinese believed, the positive things will become stronger and stronger after this day, so it should be celebrated. The Winter Solstice became a festival during the Han Dynasty. Eventually, officials began to organize celebratory activities for this "Winter Festival."
Now, in some parts of Northern China, people eat dumplings on the day, saying that doing so will keep them from getting frostbite in the upcoming winter.
In parts of South China, the whole family will get together to have a meal made of red-bean and glutinous rice to drive away ghosts and other evil things.
Chinese use herbal paste for tonics on Winter Solstice
Besides eating dumplings or balls of glutinous rice depending on which part of China people come from, the Winter Solstice, or Dongzhi Festival is also the best time for folks to use herbal paste for winter tonics.
Chinese herbal paste is one of the eight types of traditional Chinese medicine, or TCM. The paste is usually made using 20 kinds of Chinese herbs. When winter solstice comes, herbal paste products are in great demand in many southern cities of China. Full story>>
CCTV / CNTV
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