Thankful New Year Blessings...
总把新桃换旧符 | replacing old peach wood charms with the new…
Wishing everyone a wonderful Spring Festival with family and friends and a great new Tiger Year full of happiness, peace, prosperity and a sound health. An opportunity bringing new possibilities and bright prospects.
Thank you gratefully for having followed and read 5iZ China blogs here or in LinkedIn in the past Ox year and look forward to providing wider perspectives of China in a new exciting year to come.
王安石 Wang Anshi (1021-1086) , Song Dynasty economist, philosopher, poet, and politician wrote following classic poem 元日 "Chinese New Year's Day" :
爆竹声中一岁除 (bào zhú sheng zhōng yī suì chú)，
春风送暖入屠苏 (chūn fēng song nuǎn rù tú sū).
千门万户曈曈日 (qiān mén wàn hù tóng tóng rì),
总把新桃换旧符 (zǒn bǎ xīn táo huàn jiù fú).
"The old year is blown away by firecrackers,
the spring breeze lends warmth to Tusu wine.
While the rising sun shines over each and every household,
people replace old peach wood charms with the new.”
Behind the poem…
"Tusu wine" is a medical wine since ancient times, infused with Chinese medicinal herbs (among others rhubarb, Sichuan pepper and cinnamon bark). The formulation was improved over centuries to drive out the winter chills and ailments, and protecting from plagues and epidemics.
Emperors drank Tusu wine on New Year’s day while writing the auspicious New Year's blessings. The name Tusu originates from a kind of herb (probably Perilla frutescens or Smilax) which were painted on thatched huts in the South of China where the wine was usually brewed.
"Peach wood charms" refer to the painted images of the door gods or their names hanging as scrolls on doors and gates at Lunar New Year to ward evil off. Later on up till today replaced by poems to protect homes and buildings from bad luck and evil in the New Year.