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Tet in olden days through the eyes of Vietnamese, French scholars

“Tet Vietnam Xua” (Vietnam’s Tet in the Olden Days), a collection of articles by Vietnamese and French scholars, gives readers a host of insights into the traditional holiday through its many rituals and customs.

Tet in olden days through the eyes of Vietnamese, French scholars hinh anh 1

“Tet Vietnam Xua” (Vietnam’s Tet in the Olden Days), a collection of articles by Vietnamese and French scholars

 

The articles were published from 1919 to 1923 in the “Dong Duong” (Indochina) magazine, which was the first of its kind in the Vietnamese-language in Hanoi.

The articles were penned by celebrated Vietnamese and French scholars, including Nguyen Van Vinh, Pham Quynh, Tran Van Giap, Paul Boudet, Jean Marquet, and Georges Pisier.

They were collected by Associate Professor Nguyen Manh Hung from the Institute for Vietnamese Studies.

 

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Associate Professor Nguyen Manh Hung from the Institute for Vietnamese Studies (Photo: VNA)

 

 

The 200-page book was released recently by Mai Ha Books and the The Gioi (World) Publishing House.

It is comprised of three parts featuring the rituals, customs, and hobbies practiced by Vietnamese people during Tet, with 50 illustrations.

The first part introduces readers to the traditional rituals for Tet, including ancestor worshipping and a ceremony in Hue city to greet the new spring.

The second part presents the Tet atmosphere through the eyes of French writer Jean Marquet, historian Georges Pisier, tourists, and European missionaries in Vietnam during the 17th and 18th centuries.

Vietnamese people’s hobbies during Tet, such as the art of narcissus bulb carving, folk paintings, and others are revealed in the final chapter of the book.

The introduction is written by Vietnamese scholar Nguyen Van Huyen, in which he gives an overview of Tet - the most important annual holiday in Vietnam.

Tet in olden days through the eyes of Vietnamese, French scholars hinh anh 3

Tran Doan Lam, Director of the The Gioi Publishing House (Photo: VNA)

 

 

According to Tran Doan Lam, Director of the The Gioi Publishing House, the highlight of the book is the part featuring Tet customs in the northern region and the former imperial capital of Hue.

Associate Professor Hung said the book is worth reading as it shows how Westerners admired Vietnam’s Tet holiday./.VNA

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