Chinasage Diary

Your daily snippet of information about China. Our diary has a daily fact, proverb and a reminder of upcoming festivals and holidays in China.
Click on the link to add the daily news feed to your browser, so you can receive notifications each day automatically. diary

Today Sun 22nd Jul

Stilwell Museum

The city of Chongqing is the unlikely setting for a museum dedicated to General Joseph W. Stilwell, a U.S. General in World War II. Stilwell had his headquarters 1942-45 in the city which was for the war years the capital of Free China under Chiang Kaishek.
Read More


Shān qióng shuǐ jìn [shan qiong shui jin]
mountain poor water exhaust
Run out of food and water
Thirsty and starving; destitute

Current weather

fogBeijing weather
82 ° F / 28 ° C
Jul 21st 2018 at 7:00pm UCT
Wunderground data source


23rd Jul Great heat (Lichun calendar)
1st Aug 建军节 Army day
7th Aug Autumn begins (Lichun calendar)
11th Aug 鬼门开 Ghost Gate Opens
17th Aug 七夕节 Chinese Valentine’s Day
23rd Aug End of heat (Lichun calendar)
25th Aug 盂兰盆 Hungry Ghost
See full calendar

Sat 21st Jul


Lushan in northern Jiangxi is just south of the Yangzi. It is a high mountain at 4,836 feet [1,474 meters] where many visitors over the centuries have admired the misty views over Poyang Lake. In colonial times foreigners sought refuge from the fierce heat of summer. Chairman Mao held some important strategy meetings on its commanding slopes.
Read More

On this day

541 Emperor Wendi born 541 (1,477 years ago)


Tù zi bù chī wō biān cǎo [tu zi bu chi wo bian cao]
rabbit no eat burrow side grass
Rabbits do not eat the grass around their burrows
Thieves do not steal from neighbors
Fri 20th Jul

Empress Wu Zetian

The only woman to have ruled China in her own right was Empress Wu Zetian. Other Empresses rose to great power but they tended to do that from 'behind the curtain'. The dangerous precedent of an Empress caused her life and achievements to be somewhat distorted by later historians. As far as can be gathered she seemed to have ruled wisely if autocratically. Her downfall was due to infatuation with two young men who rose to great power and influence.
Read More


Xiá bù yǎn yú [xia bu yan yu]
defect not conceal jewel
A speck on a jade stone can't obscure its brilliance
One small fault won't spoil the impression of an overall exceptional person
Thu 19th Jul

Wang Anshi

Wang Anshi was a radical reformer of the Song dynasty. He proposed such things as reducing taxes in order to actually raise more revenue, a measure often touted in modern times. His land reforms were resisted by the land owners and his reforms proved extremely divisive and so no put into practice as he had intended.
Read More


急,授 则解
Shòu rén zhǐ jiù shí zhī jí, shòu rén yǐ yú zé jiě yī shēng zhī xū [shou ren yi yu zhi jiu yi shi zhi ji, shou ren yi yu ze jie yi sheng zhi xu]
award person use fish one explain once quick, award person use fishing standard separate one produce must
Give a fish and be fed for only a day. Teach how to fish and be free from hunger forever
It is important to learn a skill that will last for life
Wed 18th Jul

Man riding a hen

On top of the roof of important traditional buildings in China there can often be seen a line of bizarre animals and the outermost is often the figure of a man riding a hen. This figure, made of glazed terracotta, is aimed at protecting the house from storms. The origin could be rooted in the fact that a man cannot ride a hen and this absurdity leads to the impossibility that the house itself can be damaged.
Read More

On this day

1891 Guo Songtao died 1891 (127 years ago)


Tiān nán dì běi [tian nan di bei]
heaven south land north
As distant as the heavens
Places or opinions that are very far apart
Tue 17th Jul


Legalism was one of the competing philosophies for the ruling of China in the early period before the Qin period. Legalism was based on the principle that people were by nature evil and need laws to force them to behave well. The ruler had the right to do whatever he saw fit, irrespective of people's wishes. The brutal philosophy was adopted by the Qin dynasty and was replaced by Confucian principles in the following dynasties.
Read More

On this day

1402 Emperor Yongle became ruler 1402 (616 years ago)


Yuán mù qiú [yuan mu qiu yu]
cause tree seek fish
To catch fish on a tree. To look at a tree hoping it will catch fish.
Waste time doing something pointless and bound to fail
Mon 16th Jul

China's Sorrow

The Yellow River has a heavy load of alluvia that it carries from the loess plateau in Shanxi, this load makes it very prone to silting up with a high risk of flooding. More lives have been lost due to flooding of the Yellow River than any other river. In 1931 for example it is estimated that 2 million people lost their lives. It has long been known as ‘China's Sorrow]’
Read More


Laǒ jiān jù huá [lao jian ju hua]
old crafty great cunning
To be very crafty and cunning
To be tricky, cunning, crafty. Well versed in the ways of the world
All's fair in love and war
Nine Dragon Wall, dragon, Beijing
Nine Dragon Wall in the Forbidden City in Beijing. 2012. All made from ceramic glazed tiles. Photo by Seebeer , available under a Creative Commons license .
Share this page Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest

Chinasage is a new web resource, started in 2012, pages will be added, enhanced and re-formatted regularly. Please check back soon for updated information about China.

We would be most grateful if you can help improve this page. Please visit our (secure) contact page to leave any comment. Thanks.

Citation information: Chinasage, 'China Diary', , Web,

Copyright © Chinasage 2012 to 2018