W220xL300mm, China

This is a wood block print of the Kitchen God (Zao Jun) which traditional would be placed in the kitchen. He has been worshiped by the Chinese since about 1050BC!  The Kitchen God is believed to control the fortune of the household; at the end of the year (form 23 to 30 December of the lunar calender) he will report to the Jade Emperor all the kindness and evil deeds the family has done over that year.  The two assistant gods by his side, one hold a can with the record of the kind deeds and the other the evil record can.  Before the Kitchen God depart for his yearly duty, the families (usually on the 23rd) would make offering to thank him.  The offering are all sweet and gluey food, hoping it would stick to his mouth and sweet things would be said in his report.  Others would add a pair of couplet note to remind him, wine to to make him drunk etc.  hmmm … (also see The Return of the Kitchen God-01/26/2012)

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