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Answer to the Exercise on the Mid-Autumn Festival is Coming!

Sep. 3, 2014

Correct Answer: D

The annual Mid-Autumn Festival, which is the second most popular festival in China, is coming up soon! As those living and working away from their hometowns begin to miss their families, hoards of Chinese from every corner of the world head home for this holiday to celebrate and spend time with loved ones. How do Chinese people celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival? Read on to find out!

Eating Moon Cakes

A moon cake is a special Mid-Autumn Festival treat. On the day of the festival, people celebrate by eating moon cakes as a sacrificial offering to the moon. Moon cakes are round, symbolizing the reunion of a family.

Enjoying the Glorious Full Moon

In Chinese culture, the full moon is a symbol of peace and prosperity for the whole family. Its roundness symbolizes wholeness and togetherness. In the middle of the eighth month of the Chinese calendar the moon is full, and eight is also a popular number in Chinese culture which symbolizes wealth and prosperity. As such, people believe this day to be very auspicious. For Chinese people, admiring the full moon with their families is a very happy occasion.

Telling the Legend of Chang’e

As legend has it, a long time ago there were ten suns in the sky. They were burning up all the plants on the earth and forcing people to die. One day, a hero whose name was Hou Yi, used his bow and arrows to shoot down nine of the suns, thereby saving all of the people on the earth. As a reward, the queen of heaven gave Hou Yi a bottle of elixir that could make him become immortal, but there was only enough elixir for one person. Though Hou Yi did want to become immortal, he wanted to stay with his beautiful wife Chang’e more. So, he held off on drinking the elixir and asked Chang’e to keep it for him.

Hou Yi’s fame had continued to grow since he shot down the nine suns, and more and more men wanted Hou Yi to be their master. Most of these men were accepted by Hou Yi, however, not every one of his students had good morals. Feng Meng, one of his students, wanted to seize his elixir.

One day, Hou Yi went hunting with his students, but Feng Meng pretended to be ill and stayed back. After making sure Hou Yi had gone, he went to Hou Yi’s house and tried to force Chang’e to give him the elixir. Chang’e knew she couldn’t defeat Feng Meng so she quickly drank the elixir herself. The elixir made her become immortal and she rose up into the sky, flying higher and higher until she finally stopped at the moon, where she spent the rest of her days.
From then on, people have prayed to Chang’e for good fortune and safety. It has become custom to offer her lots of delicious foods during the Mid-Autumn Festival.

In our test, “孔子(Kǒng Zǐ)” was an outstanding ideologist in ancient China. “饺子(jiǎozi) dumplings” and “放鞭炮(fàng biānpào) set off firecrackers” are related to the Spring Festival. “赛龙舟(sài lóngzhōu) dragon-boating racing,” “屈原(Qū Yuán),” and “粽子(zòngzi) traditional Chinese rice pudding” are about the Dragon Boat Festival. “爬山(páshān) climbing the mountain” is about the Double Ninth Festival. And “牛郎织女(Niúláng Zhīnǚ)” is related to Chinese Valentine’s Day. Only “月饼(yuèbǐng) moon cakes,” “赏月(shǎngyuè) admire the full moon,” and “嫦娥(Cháng’é)” are about the Mid-Autumn Festival. So the correct answer is D.

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