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Culture Lesson: 2013 Year of the Snake

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This Sunday, February 10, is the most important traditional Chinese holiday. This weekend is Chinese New Year.

In China, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day are celebrated with family - a time of reunion and thanksgiving. Before the New Year it is traditional to give your house a thorough clean to sweep away any bad luck that may have gathered there. Decoration, food and gifts are all important parts of the celebration. Dumplings are eaten, money is given to children in decorated red envelopes and oranges are handed out to guests to symbolize wealth and good luck.

Chinese New Year in 2013 also marks the start of The Year of the Snake. The Chinese Zodiac follows a 12-year cycle with each year represented by an animal. The 12 animals are:


Babies born in 2013 are 'snakes'. The last snake year was 2001, the next is 2025. People who follow Chinese Astrology believe that your personality is shaped by the year you were born.

People born in the year of the snake are considered to be powerful and ambitious. Snakes become bored easily and therefore change jobs quite frequently. It is said that they are good with money and make successful businesspeople especially in finance.

Happy New Year for Sunday everyone, or as they say in China Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Now decide of on the correct meanings of the bold words used in this text:

  • 1 - Thorough means:

  • 2 - Gathered means:

  • 3 - Handed out means:

  • 4 - Shaped means:

  • 5 - Considered means:

  • 6 - Ambitious means:

  • 7 - Frequently means: