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The Picture of Banquet Given by Ziguang Pavilion by Yao Wenhan in Qing Dynasty
XNUMX. The word "blessing"
Happy New Year
If you are a high-ranking official, then you are very likely to get the word "Fu" written and bestowed by the emperor's imperial pen.Since the Kangxi period, on the first day of the twelfth lunar month every year, the "Blessing Ceremony" has been held in the Qing Palace, which means the emperor "blesses the common people".
Early that morning, the eunuch, the chief eunuch of the Maoqin Palace, had to arrange a long note, a large pen (called "blessing the common people pen"), and inkstone in Chonghua Palace in advance.After the emperor arrived in the Chonghua Palace, he wrote more than ten pieces of the word "Fu" with big pens, and bestowed them on the empress and concubine, and they were pasted by the eunuchs in each palace in the Forbidden City.
From this day on, all local officials (generals, governors, etc.) in various areas who reported memorial letters to the emperor, the emperor would include the word "Fu" in the royal script in the reply.From December XNUMXth to XNUMXth, the emperor would summon the imperial ministers, guards, ministers of kings, and Hanlin in batches at the Chonghua Palace (or Xi Nuan Pavilion of the Qianqing Palace), and give them the word "blessing".
Forbidden City Light Show
The royal ministers who received the word "blessing" from the emperor regarded this as a great honor.After returning home, frame and enshrine the word "Fu" given.During the Qianlong period, Wang Jihua received the emperor’s reward 31 times in 24 years.Later, he re-mounted 24 pictures of "Fu" and hung them in the mansion, named "Twenty-Four Futang", which was passed down as a good talk.
In addition to giving the word'blessing', the emperor of the Qing Dynasty sometimes also rewarded venison to the princes and ministers, implying the meaning of "blessing and luck".
Second, hit the stove to sacrifice the stove
The traditional custom of the Han nationality is to worship the kitchen god on the twenty-third (or twenty-fourth) year of the twelfth lunar month, send the kitchen prince to heaven, and report the human situation to the Jade Emperor.In order to make the kitchen king "speak good things from the heavens, and the lower realms will be auspicious", people often use sugar as sacrifices, so that the kitchen king "sweet mouth" and a few good words in the world before the Jade Emperor.
Every time they passed a palace gate on the way, the eunuchs would set off firecrackers to drive away evil spirits.After the emperor enters the palace, he and the queen sit on both sides of the kang. The emperor will personally beat the drums and sing the "Visit to Xian", praying for the Jade Emperor to send virtuous officials to the world to assist the court.
Statue of Stove Lord
The servants had to set up a confession, a magic card, incense candles, maltose, and a yellow goat in Kunning Palace in advance.When offering sacrifices, the emperor and queen went to the portraits of various gods such as Buddhas, gods, stoves, etc. to hold incense and salute them, and used yellow sheep and maltose as offerings.
Finally, the statue of the Kitchen King was burned, and the flying smoke meant "The Kitchen God Ascended to Heaven."The emperor, empress and everyone knelt until the fire was exhausted, and then returned to the bedroom.That night, the princes and ministers on duty in the inner court also had a holiday, so that they could go home to worship the stove.
"Qianlong Dynasty" stills
XNUMX. Setting off firecrackers and hanging lights
Firecrackers are standard for the Spring Festival.Since December XNUMX (after Daoguang, it was changed to XNUMX), the palace began to set off firecrackers to celebrate the New Year.However, after the XNUMXth, firecrackers were set off in the Qing Palace. In addition to accidents to celebrate the New Year, it also had the function of judging the position of the emperor.
From this day on, the emperor drove into and out of the palace, and every time he passed a palace gate, the attendant’s internal supervisor would set off a firecracker at the gate.From the sound of firecrackers, experienced palace people can roughly guess the position prescribed by the emperor.
In order to add a festive and cheerful atmosphere, since the twenty-fourth of the twelfth lunar month, lanterns have been hung in the Qianqing Palace every night, which is called "lighting ceremony".In different places, different festival lanterns should be hung: for example, a "longevity lantern" should be hung on the palace steps, and a "sky lantern" should be hung under the palace steps.A number of gold lanterns are hung beside the lights.On New Year's Eve, a five-color octagonal lamp will be added.Palace lanterns should also be hung on the two corridors, corridors and stone fences of the palace.Every time a lantern is displayed, music such as "Singing Fire Tree Star Bridge Chapter" is also played.On the third day of the first lunar month of the following year (later postponed to the XNUMXth of the first lunar month), the "lighting ceremony" ends, which is called "lighting out" and "lighting off".
The illuminated Forbidden City
Four, stick door god, spring couplets
On December XNUMXth, the door god, spring couplets, and "gong motto pictures" began to be pasted in the Qing palace.Similar to the folk festival customs, the door god pasted before the Spring Festival of the Qing Palace is also a large military portrait of Qin Shubao and Yuchi Jingde.The size of the door god must be exactly the same as the palace gate.
Unlike the Han Chinese Spring Festival couplets, which are usually written on red paper, because the traditional Manchu custom is cheap red and noble white, and red is used for funerals, the Spring couplets in the Qing palace are written on white silk by those who are good at regular script in the Hanlin, and red and blue are used for external use. side.At that time, door gods and spring couplets will be posted on all door ties in the palace.
During the Spring Festival, the concubines will receive a picture of "Gong Training".In fact, since the Qianlong reign, every year on December XNUMXth, the six palaces in the east and west where the queen and concubine lived have had the custom of hanging "gong motto".
Qianlong in Ruyi's Biography
On each painting, there are compliments of Qianlong's imperial inscription. There are 12 paintings, one for each of the East and West Sixth Palaces.In this way, the queens and concubines should imitate those virtuous queens and concubines in ancient times, and in the new year, they will follow Yifan and assist the emperor.The door god, spring couplets, and palace motto pictures must be hung up and pasted on the next year's light-up day before they will be removed.
"Strategy of Yanxi Palace" Bestowing Palace Training Plot
Five, sealing treasures, jumping boza
On December XNUMXth, the emperor ordered his servant to seal up the seal, which he called the "sealing treasure".On the same day, local government offices also sealed up their official seals, and no longer sealed the seal on official documents, which meant that they would no longer deal with political affairs and take a holiday.The princes who had received a job in the palace also held a "disappearance" ceremony to signify a holiday.
On the XNUMXth, the lamas will "jump bouza" in the Central Hall. "Jumping Buzha" is Mongolian, and Chinese means "to exorcise evil spirits". It is a religious ritual of Tibetan Buddhism and has similar functions to the Nuo opera of the Han nationality.
When jumping the boza, the servants set up a table in front of the Zhongzheng Hall in advance, on which various offerings, crowns, robes, belts, and shoes were placed.The emperor went to the yellow felt round tent (commonly known as "Little Golden Hall") on the left side of the hall. 184 lamas held five-color paper flags in front of the temple, spinning around in front of the temple, and chanting aloud the "Protecting the Dharma Sutra"; there were also lamas dressed as twenty-eight nights, twelve life forms and a deer, performing the religion shared by the gods hunting and capturing deer Dance means "Deer (Lu)".
There are idols tied up with grass beside the Zhongzheng Hall.After the lamas chanted the Buddhist scriptures and performed the dance, they carried the puppets and sent them outside the Shenwu Gate, which meant "send ghosts."In addition, during the three days of 36th, XNUMXth, and XNUMXth, XNUMX lamas chanted aloud the "Happy New Year Sutra" in front of the Zhongzheng Hall every day, praying for the Buddha to bless the palace in the new year.
XNUMX. Sealing pens, worshipping gods, and eating dumplings on New Year's Eve
On New Year's Eve, the emperor performed the "British Sealing Ceremony" after bathing and changing clothes in the Hall of Nourishing the Heart; until the next morning, he performed the "pen writing" ceremony.During this period, the emperor stopped writing with a pen.Even if there are special circumstances, there can be no exceptions, otherwise there will be bad luck.
Similar to the folks, on New Year's Eve, the emperor also led the royal family to pay incense to worship the ancestors and gods and Buddhas.A "Receiving God Ceremony" was held in Kunning Palace to bring back the Kitchen God who had been sent away on the XNUMXrd of the twelfth lunar month.At the same time, the servants must burn pine branches and cypress leaves in a golden furnace in the palace. Sesame stalks are scattered all over the palace courtyards for people to trample on. This is called "stomping age", which means "step by step".
According to Manchu traditional customs, dumplings (called "饽饽" by Manchus) and rice cakes are eaten on New Year's Eve.Dumplings and rice cakes are generally prepared at the beginning of the twelfth lunar month and refrigerated for later use.Unlike the lively scene where the whole family gathers to eat dumplings, the emperor of the Qing palace cannot eat with his concubines and children on New Year's Eve, but can only eat alone.
Wen Shijun said
Before entering the Pass, the Manchus had been in frequent contact with the Ming Dynasty, and they had absorbed the Han Chinese Spring Festival etiquette.After entering the customs, the customs of the Spring Festival in the Qing Palace, on the one hand, absorbed a large number of Han Chinese Spring Festival customs, but also "stubbornly" retained and inherited some traditional Manchu customs, thus forming a unique ethnic Spring Festival customs.
Zhao Erxun, etc.: "Manuscript of Qing History", Zhonghua Book Company, 1977 edition.
Lin Yongkuang and others: "General History of Chinese Customs" (Qing Dynasty Volume), Shanghai Literature and Art Publishing House, 2001 edition.
Zhao Rongguang: "The History of Chinese Food Culture", Shanghai People's Publishing House, 2006 edition.
Editor-in-Chief Zhong Jingwen: "Chinese Folklore History" (Ming and Qing Volume), People's Publishing House, 2008 edition.
(Author: awe-inspiring literature and history · suburbs of Health)
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