Chinese Valentine’s Day | Sunday Observer

Chinese Valentine’s Day

14 February, 2021

Chinese culture, as pointed out by many historians , is enriched by different myths and legends.

What has inspired peopleto study the Chinese culture is the fact that there is a legend behind every single event. Therefore, Chinese Valentine’s Day is not an exception at all.

Saint Valentine’s Day, better known as Valentine’s Day or the Feast of Saint Valentine celebrated annually on February 14 is observed in the Chinese culture as well and there is a legend behind the festival.

Romantic legend

The Double Seventh Festival known as Qixi Festival in Mandarin is the Chinese Valentine’s Day. This festival is based on a romantic legend about a weaver girl and a cowherd. According to the legend, there was a love affair between a weaver girl named Zhinshu who was the daughter of a goddes and a cowherd named Niulang. They got married and lived a happy life. As time passed, Zhinshu gave birth to two children, a boy and a girl. Unfortunately Zhinshu’s mother opposed their love , brought her daughter Zhinshu back and then eventually built a river across the sky and the earth to separate the lovers.

But later as if through a miracle of their destinies , a flock of magpies formed the bridge of love to reunite the lovers on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month. This is the legend behind the Chinese Valentine’s Day.

As pointed out by many historians, the Qixi Festival which originated in the Han dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) is proven to possess a history of more than 2000 years.

Different traditions

Even at present, the different traditions can be observed in China. On Valentine’s Day the Chinese women attired in the Hanfu (a long, flowing robe with loose sleeves and a belt at the waist) can be seen spending Valentine’s Day preparing

The single women would pray to the celestial couple to grant them a good lover and newly married women would wish to bear a baby. Later in the night, the women will gather around and compete with each other on threading a needle.

The customary food for this traditional day is very unique. The famous dish for Valentine’s Day is Qiaoguo which is a fried thin pastry made with oil, flour sugar, and honey. It is believed that eating Qiaoguo will help the couples reunite on the Magpie Bridge.

It is known that on this Valentine’s Day Chinese people can be found enjoying this moment with their beloved lovers keeping themselves away from the restless life.