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Camps and Trails in China
A Narrative of Exploration, Adventure, and Sport in Little-Known China

written by "Andrews, Yvette Borup"
...vender clash distressingly, but are worn with inordinate pride. These visits are not an unalloyed pleasure to the bride's family. Dr. Smith says in "Chinese Characteristics": When she goes to her mother's home, she goes on a strictly business basis. She takes with her it may be a quantity of sewing for her husband's family, which the wife's family must help her get through with. She is accompanied on each of these visits by as many of her children as possible, both to have her take care of them and to have them out of the way when she is not at hand to look after them, and most especially to have them fed at the expense of the family of the maternal grandmother for as long a time as possible. In regions where visits of this sort are frequent, and where there are many daughters in a family, their constant raids on the old home are a source of perpetual terror to the whole family, and a serious tax on the common resources.* *"Chinese Characteristics," by Arthur H. Smith, p. 200. Religious rites and ceremonies form a conspicuous part in the New Year's celebration. At this time the "Kitchen God," according to current superstition, returns to heaven to render an account of the household's behavior. The wily Chinese, however, first rubs the lips of the departing deity with candy in order to "sweeten" his report of any evil which he may have witnessed during the year. Usually all the members of the family gather before the ancestral tablets, or should these be lacking as among many of the laboring classes, a scroll with a part of the genealogy is displayed and the spirits of the departed are appeased and honored by the burning of incense and the mumbling of incantations. While strict attention is paid to the religious observance to the dead, at New Year's the most punctilious ceremony is rendered to the living. After the family have paid their respects to one another the younger male members go from h...

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