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iconˇ§Lanternsˇ¨ were invented by the ancient Chinese because their need for lighting at night. In the past, people needed to light candles or oil lamps for illumination. However, sometimes they would be blown out by the wind, and it was inconvenient. Therefore, people pasted paper onto bamboo frames, or pasted paper or cloth onto cloth-woven frames to cover the candlelight so that it would not be blown out by the wind. Since they had the illuminating function and were convenient, ˇ§lanternsˇ¨ became a popular item in daily use for people.

iconˇ§Lanternsˇ¨ were everyday items for people, and another style is called ˇ§palace lamp,ˇ¨ which were lanterns used in the royal palaces. In the feudal times, the royalty used items that must seem royal, so in the palaces, ˇ§lanternsˇ¨ must also be delicate and elaborate, with intricately carved frames, and beautiful textiles that are colored and embroidered. In order to emphasize the elegance, they are called ˇ§palace lamps.ˇ¨ At this point, ˇ§palace lampsˇ¨ are primarily used for illumination, but are also decorations and can accentuate oneˇ¦s position.

iconThe other form of ˇ§lanternsˇ¨ is the so-called ˇ§flower lanternˇ¨. The main function of ˇ§flower lanternsˇ¨ was not illumination but to demonstrate fun, and these slowly became a folk art type. In the field of traditional Chinese art, flower lanterns are richly intricate artworks that have an ancient feel. The technique of making flower lanterns is a unique Chinese culture. The intricate carvings on flower lanterns can only be done perfectly by the Chinese.

iconAfter the Retrocession of Taiwan, the development of lanterns has gradually shifted to flower lanterns for visual appreciation. Also, because of Taiwan became increasingly prosperous economically, each year at the Lantern Festival (the 15th day of the first month of Chinese Lunar calendar), there are lantern festivals that have become more bustling each year. Every year, people sell different types of intricately made flower lanterns to attract people, who carry different flower lanterns or drag cart lanterns to enjoy themselves on the streets. Local music groups also play percussion musical instruments to celebrate the Lantern Festival on the colorful streets.

iconIn recent years, other than large flower lanterns, junior high and elementary school students have been encouraged to make various types of small flower lanterns, along with various flower lantern competitions, exhibitions, and parades have helped this folk art to continue. Since the materials and tools for flower lanterns are very easy with many varieties in form, this maintains traditional folk customs and cultures, but also allow the authors to be creative; this is a folk art worthy of promoting.

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