This is one of the most romantic of the traditional Chinese festivals, and is also known as the “Qixiao Festival” or “Daughter’s Day”.
Origins of the festival
The Cult of Natural Astronomy
In the ancient astrological system, two stars in the sky were separated by the Milky Way and were so bright that they were respectively named ‘Altair’ and ‘Vega’, in connection with the division of labour between men who farmed and women who wove.
According to legend, on the seventh day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar. It is also called the “Tanabata Festival” because it is celebrated at night.
The Cult of Time and Numbers
Double Seventh Festival，The seventh day of the month and the seventh day of the sun. In ancient times, the sun, the moon and the five planets of water, fire, wood, gold and earth were combined together to form the “seven yao”. In the ancient times, folklore classified the first month, the second month of February, the third month of March, the fifth month of May, the sixth month of June, the seventh month of July, and the ninth month of September as the “seventh day”.
The Tanabata Bridge
The Tanabata Bridge is derived from the Chinese folklore of the love between the Cowherd and the Weaving Maiden. On the seventh day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar, the Cowherd and the Weaving Maiden meet on the Magpie Bridge.
In the village of Gudoujing, Yaochegang Town, Xiuzhou District, Jiaxing City, Zhejiang Province, there is the Tanabata Xiangqiao Festival. Every year on the seventh day of the seventh month, people rush to participate and build an incense bridge. At night, people worship the twin stars and beg for good fortune, expressing the love, aspiration and pursuit of a better life of the Chinese working people.
A competitive traditional folk cultural event during the Tanabata Festival.
The girls compete in needlework, steaming biscuits, baking biscuits, making biscuit soup, and making decorative items with dough, paper cutting and embroidery. Whoever is good at it gets the prize. For example, those who can pierce seven needles in one breath are considered to be clever and are known as clever hands.