Chinese New Year – How it Originated, Significance, Where and How is it Celebrated?

Chinese New Year, also known as Lunar New Year is just around the corner. This year, it falls on February 1, 2022, beginning the Year of the Tiger. In China alone, the Festival is the biggest human migration in the world as over 400 million people will empty the cities and return to their rural homes across the country. A full 20% of the Earth’s population celebrating, using more fireworks than any other day of the year. It’s a celebration marked by good food, red envelopes, and blessings for everyone.

Chinese New Year

2022 is a Year of the Tiger according to the Chinese zodiac, starting from February 1st, 2022, and lasting until January 21st, 2023. People born in a year of the Tiger are predicted to be brave, competitive, unpredictable, and confident. They will experience their zodiac birth sign year (benmingnian) in 2022, which is considered bad luck. The first day of festival is the day of love, togetherness, laughter, food and memorable moments to last.

 Chinese New Year

It is the most important festival in China and a major event in some other East Asian countries. Lunar New Year is known as Seollal in South Korea, Tet in Vietnam, and Tsagaan Sar in Mongolian. Lunar New Year celebrations are being held more and more in Western cities in recent years too, like New York, London, Vancouver, and Sydney.

It is the festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional lunisolar Chinese calendar. It was traditionally a time to honor deities as well as ancestors, and it has also become a time to feast and to visit family members.

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History of Chinese New Year

The Chinese New Year has a great history. In other traditions, by this time in the year, most resolutions have been forgotten or put back to the following year. However, all hope is not lost, as there’s a second chance to get it right with the celebration of Lunar New Year. The first day of the Lunar New Year begins on the new moon that appears between January 21 and February 20.

history of chinese new year

The celebration very similar to the Western one, enveloped in traditions and rituals.

The origin of the Chinese New Year is itself ancient and obscured by the amount of time. It is popularly recognised as the Spring Festival and celebrations last 15 days. In 1928, the Kuomintang party dictated that Chinese New Year will fall on the first of January, following the Gregorian Calendar, but this was abandoned due to overwhelming opposition from the populace. In 1967 during the Cultural Revolution, official celebrations were banned in China. The State Council of the People’s Republic of China announced that the public should change customs, have a revolutionized and fighting Spring Festival. And since people needed to work on the Lunar New Year Eve, they did not have holidays during Spring Festival day. The public celebrations were reinstated by the time of the Chinese economic reform.

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When is Chinese New Year?

Chinese New Year always falls between late January and mid-February.

In 2022, Lunar New Year falls on 1 February. The date is decided by the Chinese Lunar Calendar, which is based on cycles of the moon and sun and is generally 21–51 days behind the Gregorian (internationally-used) calendar. Chinese New Year is a new moon day, usually the second after the winter solstice.

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Who Celebrates the Chinese New Year?

It  is the most important festival in China and a major event in some other East Asian countries. Lunar New Year is known as Seollal in South Korea, Tet in Vietnam, and Tsagaan Sar in Mongolian. Lunar New Year celebrations are being held more and more in Western cities in recent years too, like New York, London, Vancouver, and Sydney.

Why is the Festival Celebrated? 

The festival was traditionally a time to honor deities as well as ancestors. Within China, regional customs and traditions concerning the celebration of the New Year vary widely. It is regarded as an occasion for Chinese families to gather for the annual reunion dinner. It is also traditional for every family to thoroughly clean their house, in order to sweep away any ill fortune and to make way for incoming good luck.

Chinese Zodiac Symbols

 Chinese Zodiac Signs

The Chinese Zodiac consists of 12 animals. These are Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. 2022 is the Year of the Tiger. The tiger is known to be king of all beasts in China and comes third in the Chinese zodiac.

Celebrations of Lunar New Year

The festival starts with an ancient custom called Hong Bao, meaning Red Packet. This involves married couples giving children and unmarried adults money in red envelopes. It is also common for couples to give money to their parents.

Chinese Red Envelopes

In recent years, the custom has embraced modern technology. And in 2017, billions of digital red packets were sent on Chinese New Year’s Eve through social media platforms. Then, family express greetings to their relatives and then their neighbours by going door to door. People leave their grudges behind and make new beginning.

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chinese new year food

Additionally, traditional foods like fish, Chinese dumplings, spring rolls, rice cakes and rice balls are eaten during the festival. Attracting more than 1.1 billion viewers, CCTV’s Spring Festival Gala is the most-watched national network TV broadcast worldwide. The end of the New Year is marked by the Festival of Lanterns, which is a celebration with singing, dancing, and lantern shows.

chinese lanterns decorations of lunar new year

To conclude, each day of the 16-day long festival has a name, and a meaning starting from preparation day to lantern lighting.

Dailyroabox wishes you a very Happy Christmas New Year!

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