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Autumn through its hues and festivals

Updated: 2018-09-24 08:54:25

( China Daily )

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Mid-Autumn Day

Mid-Autumn Day, which falls on Sept 24 this year, is observed on the 15th day of the eighth month of the lunar calendar.

The festival dates back to the early Tang Dynasty (618-907), and gained prominence during the Song Dynasty (960-1279). By the time the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) came to power, it had become an important traditional festival-second only to Spring Festival.

The State Council, China's Cabinet, listed Mid-Autumn Day in the first batch of national intangible cultural heritages in 2006, and declared it a national statutory holiday in 2008.

The day is also celebrated by people in some parts of East and Southeast Asia, and Chinese communities around the world.

There are two stories about the festival's origin. Some people say it has its origin in the ancient emperors' worship of the full moon, which began way back in the Spring and Autumn Period (476-403 BC). It spread across society as a tradition afterward.

Others believe the festival is related to agricultural production, as it is celebrated around the harvest season in most parts of China. Farmers also express their gratitude to the gods on the day, and offer oblations to the moon.

The day is now regarded as one of the most important four traditional festivals along with Spring Festival, Dragon Boat Festival (May 5 on the lunar calendar) and Tomb Sweeping Day (the 15th day after the spring equinox on the lunar calendar).

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