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Shangsi Festival

2014-04-01 11:12:20



College students in Han costumes celebrate Shangsi Festival in Southeast University in Nanjing, capital of southeast China's Jiangsu province, March 30, 2014. [ Bo]

Shangsi Festival, also known as March 3 Festival or Double Third Festival, is an ancient Chinese festival celebrated on the third day of the third lunar month, which falls on April 2 this year.

As for its origin, some say that it comes from the Dinner Party at the Qushui River during the Zhou Dynasty (about 1100-221 BC). Others say its origins come from the ceremonial custom of getting rid of evils by bathing in the river. On this day, people would hold a sacrificing ceremony on a riverside to honor their ancestors, and then take a bath in the river with herbs to cleanse their bodies of filth. Following that, young men and women would then go for a spring outing and these wonderful scenes were described in Shi Jing (The Book of Songs).

The Shangsi Festival activities have changed with the times. The entertainment feast and praying for descendants along the riverside were added in the Han Dynasty (206 BC-220 AD). It was after the Wei and Jin dynasties (220-420 AD) that the festival developed into the Double-Third Festival that is fixed on the third day of the third lunar month.

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