Chinese New Year QuizQuiz all about Chinese New Year. You'll find many of the answers on our Spring Festival page
1. When is the next dragon astrological year?
2. What heralds the start of New Year's day?
Early on New Year's Day is the time to have ears blasted with numerous firecrackers 爆竹 bào zhú but firecrackers are now regarded as such a noise and pollution nuisance that they are banned from the center of large cities.
3. Which astrological year follows the year of the snake?
The sequence of 12 astrological animals is rat; ox; tiger; rabbit; dragon; snake; horse; sheep; monkey; rooster; dog and finally pig.
4. Chinese New Year (Spring Festival) usually takes place in which month(s)?
March or April
January or February
December or January
The Spring Festival starts on the second New Moon after the Winter solstice, the date falls between January 20th to February 21st depending on the position of the moon each year and lasts for two weeks.
5. What are the lucky numbers in a year of the Ox?
four and one
Any mixture of 1s and 4s is considered lucky in the year of the Ox or people born in that year so 4141 is lucky and so is 144.
6. Which character for good fortune is widely seen at Chinese New Year?
The character for good fortune 福 fú has an interesting derivation. It is widely seen on Chinese gifts. Just to add to confusion it is often shown ?upside down?
7. Why are oranges, tangerines and similar fruits are often seen at Chinese New Year?
Adds Vitamin C to diet
Wishes good luck
Wishes long life
The character 桔 jú is made up of the radical 木 mù ‘wood’ and 吉 jí ‘lucky’. Also ju sounds close to 祝 zhù ‘to wish’ so it symbolizes a wish for good fortune.
8. Which color envelope is traditionally used for gifts of money?
Red is the luckiest color and is widely seen at festivals and marriages to bring good luck and keep evil at bay. Charms written on red paper are plastered all over houses at Chinese New Year because according to legend the Nian monster is frightened by anything red. 宏 hóng sounds the same and means ?great; magnificent? so a red color bestows idea of wish for greatness in decorations.
9. Which day of the New Year festival should you give the family dog a treat?
It is on the second day (the day after New Year's Day) that it is traditional to give the family pet a special treat.
10. What is the phase of the moon at Chinese New Year?
The date of Chinese New Year moves because it is tied to the phase of the moon. It is timed to occur on the second new moon after the winter solstice on December 21st; this makes it fall in late January or February.
11. What is a 'guotie'?
fried dumpling (jiaozi)
A guotie is literally a 'pot sticker' - a parcel of meat or vegetables wrapped in dough that has been fried.
12. Which Chinese god is given an offering a week prior to Chinese New Year?
He-He - the Heavenly twins
Zao Jun - the Kitchen god
Sun Wukong - the Monkey King
It is on the eve of Chinese New Year that families pay particular deference to Zao Jun so that he can relay a favorable report on the household's life to heaven for the last year - his lips are smeared with honey. Traditionally a portrait of him was hung in the kitchen which was ritually burned and replaced every New Year.
13. Why are fish widely eaten at Chinese New Year?
Fish were the first creatures created
The god of fish was born on Chinese New Year
Fish in Chinese sounds like abundance
The Chinese for fish is 鱼 yú which in standard Chinese sounds the same as 余 yú which means 'surplus, abundance'. So it is making the wish for abundance in the new year.
14. The New Year greeting 'Gong hei fat choy' is in which language?
This the Cantonese pronunciation of the greeting which in standard Chinese is 恭喜发财 gōng xǐ fā cái which means ‘congratulations, become wealthy’ and is often a greeting between people in business.
15. Which event marks the traditional end of the Chinese New Year (Spring) festival?
Dragon Boat Festival
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