When is Chinese New Year 2018 and which animal will it be?
Unlike our end of year festivities, which include a midnight countdown, Chinese New Year is a movable celebration - taking place on a different date each year.
The New Year festival is centuries old and features several myths and customs.
Chinese New Year is celebrated in countries around the world, and Liverpool - home to Europe's largest Chinese population - will see projections, music and lighting to tell the story of the city’s incredible Chinese cultural heritage as well as its ambitious future.
Why does Chinese New Year fall on a different date each year?
Chinese New Year is dependant on the lunar calendar - just like Easter and Pancake Tuesday.
It can fall either any time between January 21 and February 20.
Plans are afoot to make Liverpool's Chinese New Year celebrations even more spectacular.
Further details are yet to be announced but as it is already one of the city's most popular events then this could make it something really special.
So when IS Chinese New Year 2018?
The next Chinese New Year falls on Friday, February 16 - with celebrations set to take place in Liverpool for the entire weekend.
What Chinese zodiac animal will it be?
On February 16, 2018, the dog will take over the rooster.
Those born in the year of the dog (born after Chinese New Year in 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994 and 2006) are said to be honest, friendly, faithful, loyal, smart - with a strong sense of responsibility.
What is the story behind Chinese New Year?
The Chinese New Year has been associated with the Chinese Zodiac since the Spring Autumn Period (771 to 476 BC).
The Chinese Zodiac runs on a cycle of 12 years, which each year being named after an animal. The 12 animals are Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig. People are said to hold similar personality traits to the animal named after the year they were born.
2018 will be the Chinese Year of the Dog, following on from 2017's year of the Rooster, 2016’s year of the Monkey, 2015’s year of the Sheep, 2014’s year of the Horse and 2013’s year of the Snake.
What are the typical Chinese New year traditions?
Traditions differ, but the main message of Chinese New Year is for families to come together and wish each other peace and prosperity for the year ahead. On Chinese New Year’s Eve, families will gather together for the ‘family reunion dinner’ and gifts are exchanged.
One Chinese New Year tradition involves the older generation handing out red pockets (Hong Bao) filled with lucky money. These pockets are usually handed out to children or adults that are not married.
Throughout the Chinese New Year celebrations the colour red, a symbol of good luck and prosperity, plays an important part. Red decorations and lanterns are prominent in the streets, homes and offices throughout the celebrations.
The less enjoyable side of the customs is cleaning - sweeping is meant to rid the house of evil spirits, but families put away brooms on Chinese New Year’s Day to ensure they don’t accidentally sweep away good luck too.
How do you say Happy New Year in Chinese?
Kung Hei Fat Choi (gōng xǐ fā cái) is a traditional Chinese New Year greeting meaning ‘Congratulations and best wishes for a prosperous New Year! Happy New Year.’
Source from ECHO