Q: People in our country are very fond of puppies, describing them as a symbol of loyalty, cuteness, and intelligence, while in Chinese it is often used as a derogatory expression, such as 狗屁不通(Nonsense!; unreadable rubbish)，狗娘养的(son of a bitch)，狗眼看人低(be damned snobbish; act like a snob)，猪狗不如(worse than pigs or dogs)，骗人是小狗(someone lies/cheats people are puppies) and so on. Don’t you like dogs?
A: Throughout Chinese history, people have often had positive and negative feelings towards dogs, but more negative. Dogs were usually treated as domestic animals, animals of the same kind as chickens, cows, and pigs. So in pre-modern China, dogs were considered to be cunning and vicious and were used as watchdogs. The bad Allegorical sayings and idioms about dogs come from that period. However, in modern China, with the influence of the West, more and more people are using puppies as pets, so we still love dogs.
Q: When the Chinese say a man’s wife cheats on him, they say he is ” with a Cuckold .” Why don’t you say he’s wearing green clothes or something?
A: This statement comes from a story in ancient China. A beautiful woman was having an affair with a cloth seller behind her husband’s back. Every time her husband went out, the woman made a green hat for her husband with green cloth. When the cloth seller saw the code, he knew he could meet the woman. Therefore, later generations jokingly call a man’s lover cheating “with a Cuckold.”
Q: Why is there no cat in the zodiac?
A: Some folk myths and legends use the expression “the mouse cheats the cat” to explain this problem, but the real reason is that there were no cats in ancient China, the cat Originally from Egypt, when the cat was introduced to China is not available, folklore is brought back from India by the Tang Sanzang (in fact, the Han Dynasty). Therefore Before the cat was introduced into China, the Chinese Zodiac had long been finalized. Moreover, the big cat tiger is already in the zodiac, so the kitten doesn’t have to be on duty.
Q: Why should people wear red in the year of the birth sign(本命年)?
A: Feng Shui Neo Confucianism believes that the guardian God of the Chinese Zodiac will pay a courtesy call on heaven every year. According to the current saying, it is to report on his work. At this time, the protection of people will be weakened, demons and evil spirits will take advantage of the opportunity, and red can go to disasters and ward off evil spirits. This is also related to the origin of pasting Spring Festival couplets for the “Chinese new year”, so people use red clothes and red belts to ward off evil spirits. Later, it was carried forward by people, and even underwear and socks should be red.
Q: Why should people give children money in the Chinese New Year?
During the Shenzong period of the Northern Song Dynasty, one spring festival night, Nanxin, the youngest son of Wang Shao, a deputy prime minister, was watching lanterns in the street with adults. Unexpectedly, he was robbed by criminals and wanted to blackmail Wang Shao for a sum of money. During his escape, he happened to encounter an imperial car passing by. Nanxin shouted for help. And the criminals dropped him and fled in a hurry. Later, after Song Shen Zong learned about this, he gave some money to Nan Xuan to calm him down, and from then on “New Year’s Lucky Money” spread among the people.