Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Tomorrow is Duan Wu Jie again

The sight 'chang' or rice dumpling reminded me of Duan Wu Jie which is tomorrow. As we don't have many members in the house, we just bought some changs for praying purposes.

Actually chang has its history in China. Once there was a Prime Minister who was very loyal to the Emperor in China but he was scandalised by another mandarin officer of high ranking. His idea for improvement of the state fell on death ears as the Emperor listed to the other mandarin officer.

The Prime Minister in question was Qu Yuan and later he jumped into Milo River ending his life. When the people heard of his death, they quickly stuff rice into bamboo leaves and tied them before dumping them into the Milo River in the hope that the fishes would spare the corpse of Qu Yuan after eating the rice wrapped in bamboo leaves. This food was later known as zhongzi in Mandarin or chang in Hokkien. The people also made a lot of din by beating drums to scare the fishes away as so to keep the dead body of Qu Yuan intact.

So much for the legend of Duan Wu Jie or Chang Festival.

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