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What do you Know About Tomb Sweeping Day?

By Mei


Tomb Sweeping Day, is it exactly how it sounds? Well ... you show your respect to your ancestors by visiting their graves and sweep. However, that is not all. You remove any weeds, add fresh soil to the graves, and burn incense. Most people also bring food and drinks to offer to their ancestors spirits.



The actual name for this day is “Qingming Festival”, which means Pure Brightness Festival. The festival typicalls falls on either April 4th or the 5th (the 5th for 2023). While tomb sweeping is the most important part of the festival there are other activities, some of the more popular ones are; kite flying, putting willow branches on gates, and spring outings.



Like other festivals there are foods that are traditional to the festival. For Qingming the most popular foods are crispy cakes, sweet green rice balls, and Qingming Zong (rice dumplings). Zongzi are filled (fillings can be pork, chestnuts, or red beans) sticky rice dumplings wrapped in bamboo leaves. Qingming cakes are crispy and fried cakes.


Sweet green rice balls get their jade-green color from the green vegetable juice that is used, and then they are filled with a sweet bean paste.

It is not traditional to say "Happy Qingming Festival". You would say things more like "Wishing you peace at Qingming Festival" and "May the departed rest in peace, and I wish you and your family safety and health."


Qingming festival isn't only celebrated in China, so different countries celebrate it a little bit differently. If you're interested in learning about Qingming Festival in other countries let us know!


 


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