Tue, February 10, 2009

2009 Lantern Festival

Lantern Festival celebrated around China

A full moon is seen beside red lanterns on the night of the Lantern Festival in Shenyang, northeast China's Liaoning province February 9, 2009. The moon on Monday night is supposed to look the biggest and brightest in all the Lantern Festivals since 1957. Full story

History

Lantern Festival

The 15th day of the 1st lunar month is the Chinese Lantern Festival because the first lunar month is called yuan-month and in the ancient times people called night Xiao.

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Which one is not custom of Chinese Lantern Festival?
Eat yuanxiao
See lanterns
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Festive events

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CPC Central Committee hosts gala to mark Lantern Festival

2009-02-09 18:28:29 GMT Xinhua English BEIJING, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- The Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee on Monday evening hosted a gala to mark the traditional Lantern Festival.

Sky lanterns in Taiwan carry wishes for cross-Straits relations

2009-02-09 16:19:05 GMT Xinhua English TAIPEI, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- Taiwan celebrated the traditional Chinese Lantern Festival, which ends the lunar New Year holiday, Monday evening with local people flying "sky lanterns" and wishing peace and prosperity for cross-Straits relations.

Lantern Festival to see biggest festive moon in 52 years

2009-02-09 09:16:36 GMT Xinhua English BEIJING, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- China's traditional Lantern Festival will witness the biggest and roundest moon for the past 52 festivals Monday night.

Downtown Beijing to ban fireworks as of midnight Monday

2009-02-09 08:36:52 GMT Xinhua English BEIJING, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- Beijingers have been told to stop igniting and selling fireworks in the downtown areas as of midnight Monday, or face arrests, city authorities said.

Origin & custom

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Performances and fireworks

2009-02-06 07:43:34 GMT SINA.com In the daytime of the Festival, performances such as a dragon lantern dance, a lion dance, a land boat dance, a yangge dance, walking on stilts and beating drums while dancing will be staged. On the night, except for magnificent lanterns, fireworks form a beautiful scene. Most families spare some fireworks from the Spring Festival and let them off in the Lantern Festival. Some local governments will even organize a fireworks party. On the night when the first full moon enters the New Year, people become really intoxicated by the imposing fireworks and bright moon in the sky.

Guess lantern riddles

2009-02-06 07:39:49 GMT SINA.com "Guessing lantern riddles"is an essential part of the Festival. Lantern owners write riddles on a piece of paper and post them on the lanterns. If visitors have solutions to the riddles, they can pull the paper out and go to the lantern owners to check their answer. If they are right, they will get a little gift. The activity emerged during people's enjoyment of lanterns in the Song Dynasty (960-1279). As riddle guessing is interesting and full of wisdom, it has become popular among all social strata.

See Lanterns

2009-02-06 07:36:09 GMT SINA.com In the years of Yongle (58A.D to 75), Han Dynasty, Ming Emperor promoted Buddhism highly. A famous monk named Cai Yin came back from India. He told Ming Emperor that monks in India get together and look the Buddhist bones with reverence on 15th of January. Ming Emperor ordered to light lanterns in the court and temples on 15th of January according to the Chinese lunar calendar. He did this to show his sincerity to the Buddhist and this deeds spread to the folk places. From that time on, people light lanterns in the night of 15th of January according to the Chinese lunar calendar to celebrate the Lantern Festival.

Eat Yuanxiao

2009-02-06 07:27:23 GMT SINA.com Besides entertainment and beautiful lanterns, another important part of the Lantern Festival,or Yuanxiao Festival is eating small dumpling balls made of glutinous rice flour. We call these balls Yuanxiao or Tangyuan. Obviously, they get the name from the festival itself. It is said that the custom of eating Yuanxiao originated during the Eastern Jin Dynasty in the fourth centuty, then became popular during the Tang and Song periods.

Photos & Vedios

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Tibetans celebrate Lantern Festival in temples

2009-02-10 05:33:21 GMT Xinhua English Tibetans went to Tibetan Buddhism temples on Monday to celebrate the Lantern Festival.

Lantern Festival celebrated around China

2009-02-10 03:37:39 GMT China Daily People across China set off fireworks, watch lanterns and performances and eat yuanxiao to celebrate the Lantern Festival on Monday night.

Taiwan lantern festival

2009-02-09 07:22:30 GMT Reuters Taiwan celebrates the annual lantern festival with hundreds of lanterns delivering prayers to the sky.

Lantern Festival celebrated around China

2009-02-09 03:12:23 GMT Xinhua English Swimmers perform dragon dance in water of Liujiang River to celebrate the traditional Chinese lunar Lantern Festival, in Liuzhou, southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Feb. 7, 2009.