In China, the Double Seventh Festival, or Ingenuity-begging Festival (the festival to plead for skills) falls on the seventh day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar. The festival originates from the legend of the loyal love between Niulang (cowherd) and Zhinv (weaving girl).
On the festival, girls beg for bright heart and knitting and needlecraft skills from the goddess in heaven. There are various folk customs of ingenuity tests in ancient China. And the maids in palace also paid great attention to the activities, which are usually supported by the emperor. Celebrations are also held in the theme of the Double Seventh Festival everywhere in China, such as the customs of “seed plant for child”, “catch dew” and “sworn sisterhood under the moon”. In the romantic evening, girls prepare melons and seasonal foods under the moon before worship and prayers for skills and a good marriage.
The food customs in each place for the festival are not necessarily the same but are all called having propitious food. Dumplings, noodles, deep-fried twisted dough sticks and wontons are mostly included, among which the most famous is the Qiaoguo (Fried Thin Paste).
As China’s Valentine’s Day, the Double Seventh Festival is the most romantic one among all traditional Chinese festivals, and also a day most valued by girls in the past. Today, it is still one of our favorite festivals under evolvement and innovation based on the traditional culture.