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4 Famous Chinese Love Stories That Permeate Time and Distance (Part II)

Mar. 29, 2019

HSK 3 quiz

In the first part of this two-part article, we learned about the stories of “孟姜女哭长城 (Mèng Jiāng Nǚ Kū ChángChéng) Lady Meng Jiang’s Bitter Weeping” and “梁山伯与祝英台 (Liáng Shānbó Yǔ Zhù Yīngtái) The Butterfly Lovers.”

While in today’s second half, we will go over the remaining two legends, “白蛇传 (BáiShé Zhuàn) Legend of Lady White Snake” and “牛郎织女 (NiúLángZhīNǚ) the Cowherd and the Weaver Girl,” which will complete our four mythological love stories series.

白蛇传 (BáiShé Zhuàn) Legend of Lady White Snake

HSK 3 quiz

This story is a little more steeped in ancient Chinese philosophy and therefore is a little more “复杂 (fùzá) complex.” There is a very famous traditional Chinese folklore that has a close connection to the Dragon Boat Festival and it goes like this.

“很久以前 (Hěn jiǔ yǐqián) Once upon a time,” it was said that Bai Suzhen was a snake demon of the Millennium Development. In order to repay Xu Xian for saving her life 500 years prior, she decided to couple with Xu Xian. Then she descended to the world and “结婚 (jiéhūn) get married,” living together happily.

However, after they married, the monk, Fa Hai, from Jin Shan Temple told Xu Xian that Bai SuZhen was a snake demon. Xu Xian was a little skeptical and decided to let his wife drink the regular wine according to Fa Hai’s instruction for the Dragon Boat Festival.

Bai Suzhen had to show her original shape and Xu Xian was scared to death. She then stole fairy grass from paradise to save her husband’s life. Later on, Fa Hai “欺骗 (qīpiàn) deceived” Xu Xian, taking him to Jinshan Temple and putting him under house arrest.

Bai Suzhen and her follower Xiao Qing fought with Fa Hai. They used magic and their powers to bring disastrous water overflowing to Jin Shan Temple, thus hurting other innocent creatures in effect. Therefore, Bai Suzhen, in violation of the laws of God in heaven, was crushed under the Lei Feng Tower after giving birth to a child.

牛郎织女 (NiúLángZhīNǚ) the Cowherd And the Weaver Girl

HSK 3 quiz

This next story comes from the “星座 (xīngzuò) constellations Altair and Vega” and is about a “牛郎 (Niúláng) cow herd” and a “织女 (Zhīnǚ) weaver girl.”

The “牛郎 (Niúláng) cow herd” was out in the fields one day when he heard the goddesses playing in the river. He immediately fell in love with our main character “织女 (Zhīnǚ) weaver girl” and they had two children together.

Unfortunately, the head Goddess of the Milky Way was angered by “织女 (Zhīnǚ) weaver girl” not doing her weaving job and geting married to a normal person and then, therefore “分开 (fēnkāi) separated them by a big river. They were only “允许 (yǔnxǔ) allowed” to see each other on the 7th day of the 7th month on “鹊桥 (quèqiáo) the bridge formed by magpies” every year.

It is a beautiful love story of enduring love for one another, even though long-term separation.

Read a Chinese Story About 七夕节 (Qīxī jié) Double Seven Festival

After reading the four stories please let us know which was your favorite in the comments! Also, if you would like to practice using any of the vocabulary words above, write a sentence using them in the comments section and we will correct it for you.

Key Words:

1. 复杂 (Fùzá) complex; complicated

Example:
Qíngkuàng yuè lái yuè fùzá le.
情况越来越复杂了。
The situation is getting more and more complicated.

2. 以前 (Yǐqián) before; formerly; prior to; previously; ago

Example:
Wǒ yǐqián cuòguài nǐ le.
我以前错怪你了。
I was mistaken about you.

How to Use 以前 (Yǐqián) And 从前 (Cónɡqián) in Chinese?

3. 结婚 (Jiéhūn) marry; get married; couple; making a match

Example:
Tā liǎ dǎsuàn jīnnián jiéhūn.
他俩打算今年结婚。
They are going to get married this year.

4. 欺骗 (Qīpiàn) cheat; deceive

Example:
Tā bèi zhǐkòng qīpiàn kèhù.
他被指控欺骗客户。
He was accused of cheating the customers.

5. 星座 (Xīngzuò) constellation

Example:
Wǒ de xīngzuò shì bái yáng zuò.
我的星座是白羊座。
My constellation is Aries.

6. 分开 (Fēnkāi) separate; part; split; uncouple; asunder

Example:
Tāmen yǐjīng fēnkāi shí nián le.
他们已经分开十年了。
They have been separated for ten years.

7. 允许 (Yǔnxǔ) permit; allow; enable; admit

Example:
Wèi chéngnián rén bù yúnxǔ jìnrù wǎng bā.
未成年人不允许进入网吧。
Minors are not allowed to enter internet cafes.

HSK 3 quiz
1. Which of the following is the correct Chinese Pinyin of “白蛇传 Legend of Lady White Snake?”

A. Bái shé chuán
B. Bái shé zhuàn
C. Bǎi shé chuán
D. Bǎi shé zhuàn

2. Read the dialogue and answer the question below.

Xiǎo Xīn: Nǐ zhīdào qīxī jié de yóulái ma?
小新:你知道七夕节的由来吗?

Xiǎo Hóng: Dāngrán le, qīxī jié yuán yú NiúLángZhīNǚ de chuánshuō, yě bèi chēng wéi zhōngguó de qíngrén jié.
小红:当然了,七夕节源于牛郎织女的传说,也被称为中国的情人节。

Which of the following statement is true according to the dialogue? Please choose the best answer.

A. The Chinese Valentine’s Day is on February 14th each year.
B. The Double Seven Festival originated from the legend of Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingtai.
C. The Double Seven Festival is also known as the Chinese Valentine’s Day.

See Answer Analysis

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