China

Xibe ethnic group celebrates Xiqian festival

By Zhang Xiao (chinadaily.com.cn)
Updated: 2011-05-21 11:16
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According to the lunar calendar, April 18 is Xiqian festival for the Chinese Xibe ethnic group. On May 20, Xibe people in Qapqal gathered together to celebrate the traditional festival, during which traditional songs and dances were performed.

Xiqian festival is a significant time for Xibe people. Before the 16th century, they had been living in the Songnen plains and the Hulunbuir prairie for generations. Until the mid-18th century, a vast conscript army was called up by the Qing government, as well as their families, for a total of 3,275 people. On the 18th of April, they were moved west to Yili of Xinjiang.

To commemorate this historic event, April 18 on the Chinese lunar calendar has become the Xiqian festival. Since then, people of Xibe nationality gather every year to celebrate.

People of Xibe ethnic group have their reserved culture and their own language, as well as their rich customs and religions. They live with Xinjiang people and other ethnic groups, forming a unique regional and national culture.

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