Although we have already talked about the Chinese Year of the Horse at the beginning of 2014, the actual Chinese New Year begins today, January 31st. Here are a couple of facts about the Lunar New Year as it is also called.
1. The celebration goes on for 15 days. Now, that’s a party.
2. The traditional celebration is centuries old. The origins stem from an individual’s stand against a mythical brute call the “Nian”. In modern times, you defend against Nian using food and firecrackers.
3. The Chinese consider red as their lucky color. It is considered an auspicious color and is believed to drive off bad spirits, carry favorable luck, grant fortune and life span. Many years ago when I was visiting Hong Kong I purchased little money envelopes which were of course red! They were to be used to give gifts of money on special occasions. I used them as envelopes to deliver fortuitous messages!
4. Cleaning should be finished before New Year’s Day, as it is said that it removes bad luck from the house.
5. Food, as in any celebration that involves people, is a huge part of New Years. During the 15 days, the Chinese eat oranges as it symbolizes prosperity.
6. During the Chinese New Year, the world’s biggest human migration takes place as hundreds of millions of people travel to China to celebrate with their families.
7. Lion and dragon dances occur at most New Years parades as it is believed that boisterous drumming and loud cymbal playing will chase away terrible fortune and bad spirits. Chinatown in Washington D.C. does a wonderful New Years parade, complete with dragon and lion dancing!
HAPPY NEW YEAR AGAIN!!!!!
In honor of the Chinese New Year here are a few beautiful pieces of jewelry.
Pair of Jadeite Peapod Pendants, photo courtesy of Sotheby’s.
Jadeite and Diamond Earrings, photo courtesy of Christie’s.
Colorless jadeite and diamond in rose gold surround, photo courtesy of Christie’s.
Jadeite and Multi-gem Orpheus Ring by Anna Hu, photo courtesy of Christie’s.
P.S. What are you doing this weekend! Let me know if you are going out for Chinese food!