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Origin and customs of Korean Lunar New Year Seollal Updated: 2020-01-23 16:27:50 KST


Seollal is one of the two biggest national holidays in South Korea.
People gather with their families to celebrate the Lunar New Year.
Seollal falls on the first day of the Lunar calendar, which is based on the moon's monthly cycles.
The holidays usually last three days: the day before the actual Lunar New Year's Day, the day itself and the day after.
But as this year's Seollal falls on January 25th which is Saturday,… the next Monday is an alternative holiday.
History books have a record of Koreans celebrating Lunar New Year as far back as the year 488 during the Silla kingdom era.
Traces of Seollal traditions can also be found during the Joseon dynasty.
For Seollal, many Koreans return to their hometowns to visit their parents and other family members.
So traffic jams are a commonly reoccurring theme during this time of the year with millions travelling across the country.
On the day of Seollal, Koreans usually carry out ancestral rituals called 'charye' where they pay respect to their ancestors by placing traditional food in front of pictures or names of the deceased.
After that, there is 'sebae', when children wish their elders a happy new year by performing the deep traditional bow.
In return, their elders give short words of wisdom and some pocket money to the young.
Families then eat tteokguk, the traditional Korean soup made with a thin beef broth and slices of chewy rice cakes.
Eating tteokguk on Seollal is considered as adding one year to your age,…so you become a year older on the Korean Lunar New Year.
Kan Hyeong-woo, Arirang News.
KOGL : Korea Open Government License
본 저작물 중 본문에 해당하는 뉴스 스크립트(텍스트)는 공공누리 제1유형-출처표시 조건에 따라 이용할 수 있습니다.
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