Chinese New Year 2018

Chinese New Year 2018

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The Chinese New Year is the most important festival in China. In 2018, the Chinese New Year begins on February 16 and marks the beginning of the Year of the Dog. Linked to the Chinese lunar calendar, the feast was traditionally a time to honor national and celestial deities, as well as ancestors. It was also time to gather the family to celebrate. With the popular adoption of the Western calendar in 1912, the Chinese celebrated January 1 as New Year’s Day. China, however, continues to celebrate the Chinese New Year with traditional greetings, “Kung hei fat choi.”



The ancient Chinese lunar calendar, on which the Chinese New Year is based, has functioned as a religious, dynastic and social guide. The bones of the Oracle inscribed with astronomical records indicate that the calendar already existed in the 14th century BC, when the Shang dynasty was in power.

The structure of the calendar was not static: it was restored according to the emperor who had the power and varied from one region to another.

The Chinese calendar was a complex clock. Its parameters have been set according to the lunar phases, as well as the solar solstices and equinoxes. Yin and Yang, the opposite but complementary principles that make up a harmonious world, have also dominated the calendar.

The Chinese New Year usually begins with the new moon that occurs between the end of January and the end of February, and lasts about 15 days, until the full moon arrives with the Lantern Festival.


The Chinese calendar also included the Chinese zodiac, the cycle of twelve seasons or “signs” along the apparent path of the sun through the cosmos.

Each new year was marked by the characteristics of one of the 12 animals of the zodiac: the rat, the ox, the tiger, the rabbit, the dragon, the snake, the horse, the sheep, the monkey, the rooster, the dog and the pig


The traditional Chinese New Year was the most important festival on the calendar. All the attention of the house was fixed on the celebration. Meanwhile, business life has almost stopped. The home and family were the main centers of interest.

In preparation for the holidays, the houses were carefully cleaned to eliminate the “huiqi”, or bad breath, that could have accumulated during the previous year. Cleanliness should also appease the gods who would come down from heaven to do inspections.

Ritual sacrifices of food and paper icons were offered to the gods and ancestors. People published printed parchments with messages of luck on the doors of the house and lit fireworks to scare the evil spirits. The elders gave money to the children.

In fact, many rites performed during this period were intended to bring luck to the home and a long life to the family, especially the parents.


The most important was the party: on New Year’s Eve, the extended family gathered around the table for a meal that included as the last dish a fish that symbolized abundance and therefore was not meant to be eaten.

In the first five days of the new year, people ate long noodles to symbolize a long life. On the 15th and the last day of the new year, the round meatballs in the shape of a full moon were shared as a sign of unity and family perfection.


The Western-style Gregorian calendar arrived in China with Jesuit missionaries in 1582. It began to be used by the general population in 1912, and on New Year’s Day, it was officially recognized on January 1.

Beginning in 1949, under the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party leader, Mao Zedong, the government banned the celebration of the traditional Chinese New Year and followed the Gregorian calendar in its dealings with the West.

But at the end of the 20th century, Chinese leaders were more willing to accept the Chinese tradition. In 1996, China instituted a week-long holiday, now called the Spring Festival, giving people the opportunity to travel home and celebrate the new year.

San Francisco, California, says its Chinese New Year parade is the largest celebration of its kind outside of Asia. The city has hosted a celebration of the Chinese New Year since the days of the gold rush of 1860, a period of large-scale Chinese immigration in the region.

At the beginning of the 21st century, many Chinese families spent a significant part of their discretionary income to celebrate the Spring Festival with traditional symbols and food. They also spent time watching the TV Spring Festival Gala, an annual variety show featuring traditional and contemporary singers, dancers and magical demonstrations.

Although the rites of the festival no longer have religious value, people have remained sensitive to the animals of the zodiac to the extent that they consider what it might mean, for example, a year of the dog in 2018 for his personal fortune or a child born on that date. weather.

There has been a change of attitude towards the Spring Festival among young Chinese, with Chinese students saying they prefer to surf the Internet, sleep, watch TV or spend time with friends to celebrate with their family. They also reported that they did not like traditional New Year’s foods, such as meatballs and sticky rice pasta.

With their change of name from the Chinese New Year to the Spring Festival, for some members of the younger generation, vacations have evolved from an opportunity to renew family ties to the opportunity to relax work.

Formal Chinese New Year Facebook Greeting

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