Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Tet Vietnam – the meaningful holiday of Vietnamese people

Tet Vietnam or Vietnam lunar new year, more commonly known by its shortened name Tet, is the most important and popular holiday in Vietnam.


It is a relaxing and special occasion for everyone to think about the achievements of the past year and plan for the New Year. A “Mam Ngu Qua” (five-fruit tray) on the ancestral altar during Tet holiday symbolizes the admiration and gratitude of the Vietnamese to Heaven and Earth and their ancestors, and demonstrates their aspiration for prosperity.

For a long time, together with horizontal lacquered boards engraved with Chinese characters, parallel sentences written on crimson paper, ornamental kumquat and peach trees, and popular Hang Trong and Dong Ho pictures, the five‑fruit tray prepared for Tet has transcended its material value to become a spiritual symbol, an original national product in the spiritual life of the Vietnamese. At present, while many of the ancient spiritual values have sunk into oblivion, the custom of arranging the five‑fruit tray on the altar during the lunar New Year days is being jealously preserved as a fine legacy of Vietnam’s traditional culture. The buying of votive offerings and the decoration of ancestral altars during the traditional New Year days are closely connected with the rituals of worship practiced by the Vietnamese towards their ancestors. During these New Year days, in addition to such national dishes and products as “Fat pork, salted onions, parallel sentences written on red paper. Long bamboo poles planted upright, strings of fireworks, and square glutinous rice cakes”, it is indispensable for each Vietnamese family to display a five‑fruit tray on the ancestral altar for Tet.

No matter whether rich or poor, on New Year’s Eve, it is also very important for the Vietnamese to select the best five-fruit tray. The fruits are placed on a red-lacquered wooden tray and arranged in a balanced cone and in harmonious colours. Fruits that may be laid out on the tray include bananas, finger citrons, watermelons, oranges, kumquats, coconuts, apples, persimmons or tomatoes, and chilis. Each kind of fruit has its own indication. A hand of green bananas or a finger citron, for example, symbolises one’s wish for the protection of supernatural powers and ancestors, pomelos and watermelons indicate fertility, and kumquats or persimmons connote wealth and prosperity.

Thu nhỏ
Travel consultancy