Based on the practical needs of agriculture, Chinese people initiated the 24 solar terms towards the end of the Warring States Period (475 B.C.-221 B. C.). The term "solar terms" can be found in Yellow Emperor' s Canon of Internal Medicine. In this book, every five days was called a hou, and every three hou made a qi. Therefore, a year was divided into 72 hou, or 24 qi. But the names for these solar terms did not appear until the Western Han Dynasty (206 B.C.-24 A. D.) in Huainanzi.
The 24 solar terms were determined by the changes of the sun’s position in the zodiac all through the year. A complete circle of the changes was divided into 24 segments, and each segment is about half a month. In the lunar calendar, the date of each solar term is basically fixed, with minor changes within one or two days. As a reflection of the regularity of the changes of the climate in the areas of the middle and lower reaches of the Yellow River, the 24 solar terms are still being used by the farmers.
The following is a brief chronological introduction of the first six solar terms.
# 1 the Beginning of Spring
# 2 Rain Water
# 3 the Waking of Insects
# 4 the Spring Equinox
# 5 Pure Brightness
# 6 Grain Rain
The introduction of 24 solar terms in China is over today. There are 18 solar terms without introduction. If you want to learn more introductions of the other solar terms. Please wait for our next introduction of solar terms.
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