Chinese culture is incredibly intricate and is deeply entrenched in the country’s rich history. To help you have a little insight into this amazing part of the world, here are a few important Chinese culture facts to know.
Lucky Numbers and Colors
Numbers and colors carry certain significance in Chinese culture – people even have specific lucky numbers and colors based on the date and time of their birth! Some, however, carry universal connotations (often because their pronunciations are similar to words that have a good or lucky meaning).
The number 8, for example, indicates wealth, success, and prosperity, while 4 is incredibly unlucky. Yellow represents royalty and power, while red symbolizes happiness, beauty, and good fortune.
Food and dining are important aspects of Chinese society! The utensils are almost exclusively chopsticks and spoons – because the meal table is meant to serve as a place of peace and harmony, knifes (which could be interpreted as a weapon) are not used.
Chopsticks, or “Kuaizi”, are used for almost all dishes. If they are made of wood, resist rubbing them together to remove splinters (as is common in Western society).
This insinuates that the chopsticks are of low quality and it is an insult to the establishment. Also, avoid sticking your chopsticks into food (particularly rice bowls) – this is considered somewhat uncivilized and impolite.
When eating out, most restaurants will have a boisterous but friendly atmosphere. A large crowd and lively conversation is considered a sign of good food! But if you would like a more quite place to eat, some restaurants offer private rooms called “baoxiang”.
Tea production was historically a driving force behind China’s economic development, and since has become an important part of Chinese culture and tradition. Legend has it that in 2737 BC Emperor Shennong had dried leaves fall into his cup of hot water (which had been boiled for hygienic precaution), and tea was born!
It is drunk at all times of day without cream or sugar. The classifications include green, red, wulong, white, and yellow tea.
These Chinese culture facts make up just a small part of this fascinating and beautiful part of the world, but keeping them mind will definitely start you off on the right foot for your travels, or when connecting with people from this wonderful place!