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Friday, May 5, 2017, 16:03

5 things you may not know about the Start of Summer

By Agencies
5 things you may not know about the Start of Summer
A painting of Start of Summer from Li Xiaolin. As a popular young Chinese artist, Li combined the customs during a solar term and the associated food and created a series of illustrations named "24 Solar Terms and Chinese Delicacies". (Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn)

The traditional Chinese lunar calendar divides the year into 24 solar terms. Start of Summer (Chinese: 立夏), the 7th term of the year, begins on May 5 and ends on May 20 this year.

Start of Summer signals the transition of seasons. On this day, the sun's rays reach an angle of 45 degrees to the earth The temperature will rise quickly during this period, yet in Northern China weather remains mild, not tropical.

Here are five things to learn about the Start of Summer.

Greeting Start of Summer

The term Start of Summer was originated at the end of the Warring States Period (239BC). Since it is a crucial time for the harvest of summer crops such as wheat and canola, ancient Chinese emperors in different dynasties attached great importance to the Start of Summer.

In the Zhou Dynasty (1050-221 BC), the emperor led his officials to stage a welcome rite for the Start of Summer and encouraged his residents to seize the key time to do farm work. It's said that most of the decorations were arranged in the color red, including the emperor and the officials' dress, the jade pendants, the horses and the flags, in order to show respect to the god of summer and pray for a good harvest.

5 things you may not know about the Start of Summer
Dream of Lotus: Start of Summer , by Yang Peijiang. (Photo/artron.net)

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