Total Pageviews

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Chinese Year of Snake celebrations in Asia

Millions of people are celebrating Lunar New Year, also known as Chinese New Year, the most important annual holiday in much of Asia.

The new year began in China at midnight, with firework displays and family gatherings.
It marked the opening of the year of the snake, taking over from the dragon.
In China, an estimated 200 million people have travelled to be with their families in what is considered the biggest mass human migration on Earth.
The holiday will continue throughout the week, with government offices and businesses shut down.
The snake has a mixed reputation in China. It is associated with wisdom, beauty and intelligence but also pride and anger.
Pollution concerns
Residents of Beijing braved freezing temperatures on Saturday night to let off fireworks, which are believed to ward off evil spirits.
However, the displays in the capital were reportedly more muted than in previous years, starting later at night than usual and ending earlier on Sunday morning.
The city authorities had asked people to set off fewer fireworks because of dangerous levels of air pollution and a high number of smoggy days during the past month.
There was a sharp reduction in the sale of fireworks in the city, with 260,000 boxes purchased in the five days leading up to the new year, a 37% drop compared with last year, according to the official Xinhua news agency.
City environmental bureau readings showed 2.5 microgram pollution levels well above the 200 mark in most parts of the city at midday on Sunday, but these were well below the readings of 700 seen in January. Last year's fireworks sent pollution levels as high as 1,500.

 Chinese Astrology

Snake sculpture in Beijing, 9 February

  • Chinese new year falls on the first day of the first month of the lunar calendar
  • There are 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac: the rat, the ox, the tiger, the rabbit, the dragon, the snake, the horse, the ram, the monkey, the rooster, the dog and the pig
  • Exact origins of the Chinese zodiac are unknown, but common folklore has it that these are the 12 animals to reach Heaven in a race
  • Recent snake years are 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989 and 2001

From BBC News

No comments :

Post a Comment