Dragon Boat Festival
By: Susan on 5/30/2011 11:57:11 PM Category: Culture
Tags: ,Dragon Boat Festival, Double Fifth Festiv, Zongzi, Qu Yuan,

Dragon Boat Festival, also known as Double Fifth Festival, is a traditional Chinese festival celebrated on the May 5th of Chinese Lunar Calendar. This traditional festival has been celebrated since ancient China and in various ways, in other parts of East Asia as well.

About the exact origin of Dragon Boat Festival, there is a traditional view that the festival memorializes the Chinese poet Qu Yuan of the Warring States Period. He committed suicide by drowning himself in the Miluo River because he was disgusted by the corruption of the Chu State. The local people, knowing him to be a good man, decided to throw food into the river to feed the fishes to prevent them from eating Qu's body. They also sat on dragon boats, and tried to scare the fishes away by the thundering sound of drums aboard the boat and the fierce looking dragon-head in the front of the boat.

Today, there are traditions for most of Chinese people to eat Zongzi (a pyramid-shaped or rectangular mass of glutinous rice wrapped in leaves) and race dragon boats on this day in memory of Qu’s dramatic death.

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