Shangsi Festival

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Shangsi Festival (Chinese: 上巳节; pinyin: Shàngsì Jié), also known as the Double Third Festival (Chinese: 三月三), is an ancient Chinese festival celebrated on the third day of the third month of the Chinese calendar. During the festival people would go for an outing by the water, picnic, and pluck orchids. It is also a day for invoking cleansing rituals to prevent disease and get rid of bad luck. The day is also traditionally considered to be a possible birthday of the Yellow Emperor.[1]

The ancient traditions of Shangsi is mostly celebrated by a few local communities today, such as the ancient village of Xinye which holds elaborate ancestor worship ceremonies on this day.[2][3]

The great calligrapher Wang Xizhi mentions this festival in his famous work Preface to the Orchid Pavilion Poems, written in regard to the Orchid Pavilion Gathering during the Six Dynasties era.

This holiday is also celebrated in Korea, where it is called Samjinnal or sangsa, and in Japan as Hinamatsuri.


  1. ^ Nedostup, R. Superstitious Regimes: Religion and Politics of Chinese Modernity Harvard University Press: Cambridge 2009
  2. ^ Wang, Zhi-han (12 February 2006). "Cultural Investigation of March 3rd Festival in Xinye Village". Journal of Anhui Institute of Education. 
  3. ^ 新叶村祭祖盛典 一个宗族790多年的坚守 (in Chinese). Sohu. 6 September 2010.