Dragon Boat Festival
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DRAGON BOAT FESTIVAL

The Dragon Boat Festival is a traditional holiday which occurs on the 5th day of the 5th month of the traditional Chinese calendar. The fifth lunar month is considered an unlucky month.

People believed that natural disasters and illnesses are common in the fifth month. In order to get rid of the misfortune, people would put calamus, Artemisia, pomegranate flowers, Chinese ixora and garlic above the doors on the fifth day of the fifth month.[citation needed] Since the shape of calamus forms like a sword and with the strong smell of the garlic, it is believed that they can remove the evil spirits.
DATABASES
The Dragon Boat Festival is a traditional holiday which occurs on the 5th day of the 5th month of the traditional Chinese calendar. The fifth lunar month is considered an unlucky month. 

People believed that natural disasters and illnesses are common in the fifth month. In order to get rid of the misfortune, people would put calamus, Artemisia, pomegranate flowers, Chinese ixora and garlic above the doors on the fifth day of the fifth month.[citation needed] Since the shape of calamus forms like a sword and with the strong smell of the garlic, it is believed that they can remove the evil spirits.
The Duanwu Festival – also known as the Dragon Boat Festival or Tuen Ng – is a holiday that is celebrated on the 5th day of the 5th month of the traditional Chinese Lunar calendar. Since it is based on a lunar calendar, the date of its celebration varies from year to year on the Gregorian calendar but is usually within the first few weeks of June. This holiday is best known for the big Dragon Boats which are raced on this day, but the true purpose of it is to commemorate the life of Chinese scholar Chu Yuan – more commonly known as Qu Yuan.

The main staple of the Duanwu Festival are the Dragon Boat races. It is also common for people to eat
Zongzi – rice dumplings that are stuffed glutinous rice and is wrapped in bamboo. It is also common to drink a wine called Xionghuangjiu.

Other customs that are performed on this day include wearing medicine bags and hanging mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) to ward off evil and disease. It is also believed that if you can balance an egg on its end at high noon on this day, then you will have luck throughout the year.
Dragon Boat Festival, also called Duanwu Festival, is one of the four grandest traditional festivals in China, falling on 5th day of the 5th month in Chinese lunar calendar. The other three are Chinese New Year, Mid-Autumn Festival and Qingming Festival. 

 

Time for Dragon Boat Race
People enjoy a 3-day holiday for celebrations, among which the dragon boat race is the most popular. The iconic festival food is Zongzi (sticky rice dumplings).

 
A Day to Commemorate Qu Yuan & Ward Off Bad Things
It has been observed for over 2,000 years in China, to commemorate Qu Yuan (340-278 BC), an ancient Chinese patriotic poet. It is also a day to ward off evil spirits, diseases, pests and other poisonous animals by hanging calamus and wormwood, wearing perfume pouches, drinking realgar wine, and bathing in herbal water, etc.
Dragon boating began in China more than 2000 years ago, originating from superstitious beliefs that the boat racing would ensure prosperous and bountiful crops.

The dragon boat celebrations were conducted during the summer solstice - the time of the year when natural calamities such as disease and death were more prevalent. Accordingly, dragon boating has come to symbolize both humankind's struggle against nature and the fight against dangerous enemies.

The tradition of dragon boat racing was further embedded in Chinese culture by the tragedy of patriotic martyr Chu Yuan. Chu Yuan was a poet and a minister and councilor to the King of Chu and lived during the "Warring States" period in Chinese history around the 4th century BC. It was a time when numerous supremacy wars were fought between feudal lords, resulting in the destruction of many kingdoms.  The Kingdom of Chu, however, became one of the mightiest states.

Chu Yuan, in his desire to preserve the future of his kingdom and his country, provided advice to the King, which was ignored, and he was subsequently exiled. In despair over the consequent devastation of the Kingdom of Chu and his exile, Chu Yuan committed suicide by throwing himself into the Mi Lo River.
Dragon boat racing is the most popular activity during the Dragon Boat Festival. This folk custom has been held for more than 2,000 years throughout southern China, and now it has become an international sport.

Qu Yuan (343–278 BC), was a Chu State official in the Warring States Period. He was the earliest famous poet in China. See Qu Yuan Ancestral Hall for more about Qu Yuan.

When the Chu capital fell the patriotic poet drowned himself in the Miluo River. The local people were said to have paddled out on boats, either to scare the fish away or to retrieve his body. The dragon boat races represent the attempts to rescue and recover the body of Qu Yuan. This is said to be the origin of dragon boat racing.
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