Welcome!

Welcome to Chinese Festivals! My name is Scarlet Leslie-Lewis, Slytherin professor. I hope you are ready to learn about some Chinese festivals (and some Chinese vocabulary!).

(jié)
This is the word for festival or holiday.

Keep in mind that I've only picked out five festivals to discuss. There are MANY other festivals and small towns even have their own unique customs.

There are also multiple versions of the stories behind the festivals. I have decided to share my favourite version. While I'm at it, let me just explain a little.

The Jade Emperor 玉帝 (yù dì) and the Queen Mother of the West 西王母 (xī wáng mǔ) are equivalent to the supreme God and Goddess in Chinese folklore. They appear in many of the stories. I've kept it simple and chose the story with the Queen Mother. Some versions of the stories have both the Jade Emperor and the Queen Mother.

I've also decided to incorporate some mini Chinese vocabulary lessons with each lesson. Pinyin requires its own lesson, which is not my focus for this class, and I'm sure you can search for explanations on the internet. For pronunciation, you can try Google translate or other sites online ;)

Lunar Calendar

The Chinese follow a lunisolar calendar, where everyday activities are based on the Gregorian calendar, but important holidays and festivals (and ideal wedding dates) are determined by the moon. While the festivals typically fall around the same time, the exact date on the Gregorian calendar is a little different each year.

Chinese Characters
All characters in my lessons will be traditional. My family is from Taiwan, so I prefer traditional Chinese characters. I also think they are prettier and make more sense than simplified characters!

Example: Love

HeartSimplified
Traditional

The simplified character for love has no heart!