Why is the Chinese New Year different?

You would be forgiven for scratching your head and wondering just why the people of China celebrated their New Year a week or so ago – some four weeks after we celebrated it here in the UK!

However, there is one distinct difference between our New Year and the Chinese New Year. Unlike our Gregorian New Year, which is influenced by the solar calendar, the Chinese New Year is determined by the historic lunisolar calendar. The date of which determines the moon phase and the time of the solar year.

Lunar months tend to be as much as two whole days shorter than a standard solar month. As a result, an extra month is often added every few years to the Chinese calendar in order to catch up to the solar calendar. This explains why the Chinese New Year is celebrated on a different date every single year!

Although China still follows our daily calendar for business purposes, the dates of the Chinese New Year celebrations and other important Chinese festivals are based on the lunar calendar.

The Chinese calendar is said to pre-date our very own Gregorian calendar, which originated in 1582. Legend has it that the Chinese lunar calendar dates all the way back to 2600-3000 BC, having been introduced by Emperor Huangdi.

Chinese New Year is not yet a public holiday here in England, but our H.S. Johnson team has experienced significant celebrations across the West Midlands. Typically, the festivities begin on the Chinese New Year’s Eve and then carry on for a further 15 days, halfway through the first month of the lunar calendar year.

Traditionally, Chinese New Year has always been viewed as an important family time, to reunite with relatives and friends, enjoy some retail therapy, launch some fireworks to scare away evil spirits and look ahead to the coming year with real excitement.

Whether you feel like treating yourself or even a loved one to a New Year gift, at H.S. Johnson we offer a fantastic range of watches and pieces of jewellery from high-end, designer brands. If you want to celebrate the year of the Rooster in contemporary style, make sure you take full advantage of our online sale with up to 75% off many of our watches, earrings, necklaces, pendants and much more.
Gung Hay Fat Choy!

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