By in Holidays

The Dragon Boat Festival comes round !

Today is the 5th day of the 5th lunar month over here ,namely the Dragon Boat Festival ,one of our statutory holidays. Including Saturday and Sunday ,people who are in work can take three days off .Needless to say ,today the whole country is in a holiday mood . As the name implies,this day we have Dragon Boat (dragon-shaped boat) race .In addition ,eating Zong Zi (transliteration, pyramid-shaped dumpling made of glutinous rice wrapped in bamboo or reed leaves . )and hanging sweetflag leaves and argy wormwood leaves on the lintels of doors are part and parcel of the Dragon Boat Festival.The sweetflag leaf that looks like sword is supposed to kill demons and it is said that the argy wormwood leaf can drive out evil spirits and avert miasmata and seasonal pestilence .Personally , I don’t completely buy it and even think that it smacks of superstition ,but I take it for what it is worth and do it as many do .After all ,it is an ancient tradition .

Picture of sweetflag leaves and argy wormwood leaves, taken by jiangliu1949

Image Credit » picture credit :jiangliu1949

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scheng1 wrote on June 20, 2015, 6:29 AM

Today we pray to ancestors with Zong Zi too. It is a culture for all Chinese.

jiangliu1949 wrote on June 20, 2015, 8:49 AM

I am so glad that I am not the only one here that know Zong Zi.Happy the Dragon Boat festival !

CoralLevang wrote on June 20, 2015, 11:42 AM

I did not know about Zong Zi, but from what you describe, I have eaten it somewhere. Not sure exactly where though.
A Happy holiday to both of you jiangliu1949 and scheng1 !!!

jiangliu1949 wrote on June 21, 2015, 5:39 AM

Thank you very much ! Zong Zi is my favourite, which tastes nice with faint scents of reed leaf or bamboo leaf .

CoralLevang wrote on June 21, 2015, 12:23 PM

Does it have a bit of a sweetness to it? Is it sometimes filled or mixed with a mung bean or other bean paste? or meats or?

Carmelanirel wrote on June 21, 2015, 5:34 PM

I think I remember you talking about this festival before, but I don't have the memory you have. So the sweetflag leaves and argy wormwood leaves are used in this festival, are they good for other things too? Like medicine or food?

jiangliu1949 wrote on June 22, 2015, 3:19 AM

Yes ,allowing for person's taste,we may wrap mung beans,red beans or meats into it ,however mostly we only fill it with glutinous rice ,then dipping in sugar before eating .

jiangliu1949 wrote on June 22, 2015, 3:39 AM

You really have a good memory .I have started a post about this festival at either mylot or bubblews .If anything ,this time I talk more about two kinds of plant.Both the root of Sweetflag and argy wormwood are used as Chinese medicine.The former invigorates stomach and promotes digestion;the latter stops bleeding commonly used in gynaecology .

CoralLevang wrote on June 22, 2015, 9:34 AM

Yes, I have had this. I love it.

Ruby3881 wrote on June 30, 2015, 10:44 AM

I imagine the herbs are also intended to keep bugs and other pests away. Wormwood especially is known for this.

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 1, 2015, 3:13 AM

Yes,it does do its work in a way .There are more bugs than the rest of a year at this time of the year .

Carmelanirel wrote on July 1, 2015, 6:13 PM

The memory is a I think it is so cool that you know so much about plants, I hope to learn more myself.

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 2, 2015, 5:09 AM

I am not much of a person that is well learned in plants and only a plant lover at best.

Carmelanirel wrote on July 2, 2015, 8:55 AM are better than I am, especially the plants used for health reasons. I know some plants are healthy but I am not good at knowing what plant is good for what ailment.

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 3, 2015, 2:41 AM

The reason I have some knowledge of plants is that I was once engaged in Chinese medicine which mainly consists of plants .

Carmelanirel wrote on July 5, 2015, 5:46 PM

Yes, and it is knowledge that can be very helpful.

AliCanary wrote on July 10, 2015, 7:48 AM

That sounds really cool! I am going to look up pictures of dragon boats so I can get a feel for this. Thank you for writing about this interesting festival!

DWDavisRSL wrote on July 10, 2015, 4:57 PM

I will admit I did not know about this festival but am glad to learn. I will be teaching social studies next year and will include this festival in my lessons on China.

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 11, 2015, 3:36 AM

You are welcome ! It is a festival in memory of poet QuYuan (340-278 B.C.).Legend has it that people rowed to dredge up his body after poet Quyuan drowned himself in a river ,only the boats have developed into today's dragon boats .

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 11, 2015, 3:43 AM

Thank you for commenting !I am so glad that you will introduce your students to this festival .

Paulie wrote on July 12, 2015, 11:45 PM

When I lived in Taiwan before, my wife and I always celebrated the dragon boat festival by eating zongzi and watching dragon boat races. We never put sweetflag leaves and wormwood leaves on doors.

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 13, 2015, 4:29 AM

Maybe whether or not putting them on doors depends on where we live .However Chinese people all celebrate the dragon boat festival no matter where they live .

Shellyann36 wrote on July 13, 2015, 3:20 PM

Interesting tradition. I would love to watch a dragon boat race!

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 14, 2015, 3:24 AM

It is really something to watch a dragon boat race!

Shellyann36 wrote on July 14, 2015, 9:47 PM

I hope that you will post some pictures of one if you have them?

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 15, 2015, 3:03 AM

Sorry ! I have no picture about it in hand .Please see the link;_ylt=A2oKmKf4AqZVEU4AllWzygt.;_ylu=X3oDMTByYmJwODBkBGNvbG8Dc2czBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzYw--?p=Dragon+Boats+Race&fr =sfp

Shellyann36 wrote on July 15, 2015, 4:55 AM

Oh how neat. I bet that would be exciting to watch.

MegL wrote on July 17, 2015, 9:28 AM

My granddaughters all love dragons, they would love to go to that festival.

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 18, 2015, 4:03 AM

I don't know what the dragon your granddaughters love is like .Ours is a legendary animal that has scales and horns and can walk ,fly and swim.

MegL wrote on July 18, 2015, 5:33 AM

Yes, those are the types of dragons they like! They have toy ones to play with.

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 18, 2015, 5:42 AM

I am surprised they have Chinese dragon toys to play with .They are really lovely kids .

Mommyjen wrote on July 18, 2015, 9:32 AM

I hope i could see a dragon boat festival one day. By the way ,what is miasmata jiangliu1949

jiangliu1949 wrote on July 19, 2015, 2:58 AM

Thank you for commenting ! Miasmata refers to dirty air or a thick unpleasant mist that smells bad .

rebelann1949 wrote on August 23, 2015, 10:43 PM

Never underestimate the ancients, they were by no means stupid and it is very likely that there is merit to those superstitions and you may even find that plants like wormwood could ward off some pesky insects.

jiangliu1949 wrote on August 24, 2015, 3:33 AM

Yes,wormwood does do its work in that way .The ancients left us a plendid cultural heritage that is worth exploring .