Culture Insider: Dragon Boat Festival

Updated: 2021-06-10 14:35
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Driving away the five poisonous pests

According to Chinese custom, the "double fifth" is the hottest day of the month, when all the poisonous vapors are in the air, so every attempt is made to harmonize yin and yang so that danger and disease can be avoided.

It is believed that five kinds of poisonous pests would harm children's health, including a snake, centipede, scorpion, lizard, toad and sometimes spider. People will cut colorful silk into patterns of these five pests or paint them on red paper, and then paste the silk or red paper on the doors or walls of the bedroom, each impaled by a needle.

The five pests are also often embroidered on clothing, stamped on cakes, engraved on accessories and used for decorations. They are believed to have the power to drive away all pests and pestilence.

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