Happy Chinese Dragon Boat Festival

- Jun 06, 2019-

The origin of the Dragon Boat Festival 

In the Dragon Boat Festival on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month, the festival customs of dragon boat races (also known as Sailong boats) are widely popular in Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Fujian, Hunan, Hubei, Sichuan, Yunnan, Guizhou, Guangdong, Guangxi, and Taiwan. In the "Sports Song", the poet Zhang Jianfeng of the Tang Dynasty described the lively scenes of the dragon boat in the same year. Among them, the drums sounded three red flags and the two dragons jumped out of the floating water. The shadows were flying and the swords were blowing. The verse of Ming Qianlei. The way to race a dragon boat varies from place to place, and there are many colors.

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Why do you want to race a dragon boat during the Dragon Boat Festival, which means that the dragon boat race originated in the end? There are different opinions on this.

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To commemorate Qu Yuan’s patriotic poet Qu Yuan, this is the most common statement. Folklore, after Qu Yuan’s investment in the river, the local people salvage the river, and they have not seen the body until Dongting Lake. At this time, in the midst of heavy rain, the fishing boat on the lake rushed back to the shore. The fisherman heard that the people on the shore wanted to ferry to the lake to find patriotic ministers, and they rushed to help each other. This is the origin of the dragon boat race. In the future, on May 5th, a dragon boat will be commemorated by him to dispel the fish in the river, so as not to eat the body of Qu Yuan. Liang Duan Wu Jun's "Continuation of Harmony" has a record: "The Chu Dafu Qu Yuan was not used, it is the day (5th day of the lunar calendar) throwing Luo Jiang died, the Chu people mourn, but the boat rescued. Duanyang Jingdu, The customs are also." Other historical records also see similar arguments.


Others have commemorated Yue Wang Goujian. In the history, the more Wang Goujian wants to report the revenge of Wu Wangfu to destroy the country, and lead the people to play the name of the boat, and play the navy and conceal the water war. Also commemorating the Wu Guo general Wu Zixu said. Wu Zixu was killed by Wu Wangfu because of the murder of the court. After the body was put into the leather bag and put into the Qiantang River, it did not sink with the tide. When the tide of the Qiantang River rushed, people drove the tide and hoped to see Wu Zixu. Show spirit. There is also a commemoration of the filial piety of the filial piety who was succumbed to the death of the father in the Eastern Han Dynasty. Another said that it is a memorabilia.

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However, all of the above statements are often attached to the meeting in order to commemorate the ancestors. For the origin of the dragon boat race, the following explanations are more scientific and more reasonable.

According to modern scholars, there are three versions of the origins of the Dragon Boat Festival and the Dragon Boat Race.

One is that the dragon boat race is a sacrifice to the dragon totem. Mr. Wen Yiduo said in the "End of the Festival": "The Dragon Boat Festival is a festival in which the Wuyue nationality holds a totem sacrifice, and the dragon boat race is a semi-religious and semi-entertainment festival in the ritual." In order to resist the threat of flooding, and respect the powerful dragon of imagination as its ancestor and protector, the ship will be built into a dragon shape, painted with dragon stripes, and will be held every year at the Dragon Boat Festival to express respect for the dragon and show itself. It is the descendant of the dragon, the descendant of the dragon. According to the test, the dragon boat was already in the Western Zhou Dynasty. For example, on the painting of the Chu Tomb of the Warring States Period unearthed in Changsha, Hunan, a man was drawn on a dragon boat.


The second is that the Dragon Boat Festival originated from the evil day. On May 5th of the lunar calendar, it was a bad day in ancient folk customs. The ancients had many customs of quarantine in the summer, all of which came from the "bad moon" and "bad days" in the fifth day of May. It is a practice of witchcraft to cast the river like a horned owl. Since the Dragon Boat Festival does not originate in commemorating Qu Yuan, then the dragon boat has nothing to do with it.


The third is that the dragon boat race is an entertainment activity for the Summer Solstice Festival. Some people think that the beginning of the Dragon Boat Festival with text can be tested is the summer solstice. The reason is that in the "Jing Chu Years", the custom of the Dragon Boat Festival did not eat scorpions, but the scorpion was in the summer solstice. The monk Du Taiqing said in the book "Jade Candle Collection" that the race is an entertainment activity of the Summer Solstice Festival.


Most of the traditional Chinese custom festivals have experienced the development process from simple to complex. The festival of the Dragon Boat Festival is also the day of the evil moon. It originated very early. Later generations will commemorate Qu Yuan and so on, making the Dragon Boat Festival and Dragon Boat Race a complex folk festival with many meanings.