New book and UNESCO celebrate 24 Chinese solar terms

Updated 2016-12-20 14:07:33
The Book of Time

The Book of Time

<i>The Book of Time</i>, telling history, customs and cultural significances behind each of the 24 Chinese solar terms, will hit the shelves around China on Dec. 26.

The 24 Chinese Solar Terms were listed as world intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO on Nov. 30.

"It's different from other Chinese intangible cultural heritages such as Kunqu Opera, or paper-cutting, which are local customs and practiced by just a few people," says the author of the book, Yu Shicun, an independent scholar of Chinese culture in Beijing.

"Solar terms, however, transcend locality. They're still used in our daily lives today, relating to everyone's sense of time."

A solar term is any of 24 date in traditional Chinese calendars, which matches an astronomical event or signifies natural phenomenon, such as <i>Lichun</i> (the beginning of spring) and <i>Shuangjiang</i> (the first frost).

In the book, Yu cited material from agriculture and classical poetry to physiology, reminding modern people to live a healthy lifestyle that complies with the time in nature.

The book features 24 illustrations by painter Lao Shu, depicting people's life during the time of each solar term.

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