过年的习俗是怎么来的呢？ Click here to play the video. 点此播放动漫
Long, long time ago, in China, there was a very powerful monster called “Nian” (meaning “Year” in Chinese). It lived in the deep sea. Every Chinese New Year’s Eve it would come out and hunt for people and animals.
Thus, on each Chinese New Year’s Eve, villagers would run away and hide in the forest or caves. In one year on the Chinese New Year’s eve, a white-haired old man came to the village. He told the villagers that he knew a way to defeat Nian for good. But nobody believed him. They all escaped and hid.
That night, Nian came again. But as soon as he came to the first house, he realized something was different from past years. Four big laterns lit the house as bright as in daytime. Shining golden characters on the bright red paper flanked the front door. The strong light and shining golden and red colors stung his eyes and made his brain dizzy. Just when he was still hesitating what to do, a loud cracking sound started. Accompanying the sound, there were also fire and lightning. He waited for the scary noise, the fire and lightning to subside, but they never stopped. Soon, it was almost daybreak. He had to go back to the sea before the sun rose. But just when he turned back towards the sea, a tall figure dressed all in bright red jumped in front of him. Scared and frustrated, Nian fled as fast as he could and never came to bother people again.
Next day, the villagers returned. They were very happy that their houses were intact and their animals were untouched. The old man explained to them he could scare away monster Nian because Nian was scared of loud noise, fire, lightning and red color. That is why from then on, Chinese people always decorate their front door with doublets made of golden characters on red paper, light fire crackers on the New Year’s eve and dress in red during the holiday.