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Drink Joyful Spirits
   2014-09-10 09:41:46    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Qin Mei

Wedding banquets are an important part of wedding ceremonies in China. If someone is going to get married, he/she usually asks his/her relatives, friends and colleagues to attend a banquet in honor of such an event. Simon attended his friend Lily's wedding ceremony at the weekend and talks about it with Da Wei.


              

              lì lì jié hūn le wǒ zhōu mò qù hē tā de xǐ jiǔ le
Simon:丽丽结婚了,我周末去喝她的喜酒了。
             Lily has married, and I attended her wedding feast at the weekend.

                 tīng shuō tā  shì jià rù le háo mén
Da Wei:听说她是嫁入了豪门。
                 I heard she married a big shot.

              suàn bú shàng ,tā men dào shì mén dāng hù duì
Simon:算不上,他们到是门当户对。
              Not really, their families are of equal social standing.

                zhù fú tā zhǎo dào le yī gè hǎo guī sù
Da Wei:祝福她找到了一个好归宿。
             I wish her a happy marriage.

"喝喜酒(hē xǐ jiǔ )", literally meaning "drink joyful spirits", refers to "attend wedding feast". In China, it is common for newlywed couples to hold an opulent wedding banquet. Upon inviting others to join their wedding, the couple may say, "请你喝喜酒 (qǐng nǐ hē xǐ jiǔ) ", which means, "I am pleased to invite you to attend my wedding banquet." During the banquet, "喜糖 (xǐ táng)" or wedding candy is handed out. 

In Chinese, "门(mén)" (door or gate) is usually used to refer to a family's social status. In Da Wei's reply, "豪门(háo mén )" refers to a rich and powerful family. Da Wei says he heard Lily married a big shot and joined a rich family, but Simon denies this using the Chinese idiom "门当户对(mén dāng hù duì)" to do so, which means the families are well-matched in terms of social status.

Both "嫁 (jià)" and "娶 (qǔ)"  mean "marry" in Chinese, but their usages are quite different. We only say: 新娘嫁给了新郎 (The bride marries the bridegroom),新郎娶了新娘(The bridegroom marries the bride)。Therefore, we use "嫁" when explaining that a women has married a man, and "娶" to explain that a man has married a woman. In the last sentence, "归宿(guī sù )", which means "final destination", is only used when talking about women and is often used to refer to a woman' s husband.

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