Culture Culture

02/09/2018 - 09:12

Offering Thanh tra (Hue grapefruit) to the Royal Palace 

The 6th Thanh tra grapefruit Festival, held by the People’s Committee of Thuy Bieu Ward, Hue city, had its opening ceremony on the morning of August 31st with many special programs. Deputy Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee Bui Thanh Ha attended this special event.

Deputy Secretary of Provincial Party Committee Bui Thanh Ha offered flowers in celebration of the festival.

The event welcomed representatives from various local departments, the City People's Committee, as well as people from Hue city and visitors from different regions. The highlight of this year's festival was the re-enactment of the thanh tra offering ritual to the Kings by river, from Luong Quan village to the Royal Citadel.

According to the organizers, since the first step, namely “The Festival Introducing Local Products of Thuy Bieu Ward” in 2010, when the value of thanh tra products was literally unknown; the festival has undergone major changes so far.

The festival now not only introduces Thuy Bieu thanh tra, but also displays thanh tra grapefruits of other growing places in the province such as Huong Van, Phong Thu, Thuy Bang, Loc Dien communes.

Mr. Hoang Thang Long, Chairman of the People's Committee of Thuy Bieu Ward, said that Thuy Bieu thanh tra nowadays was a (fruit) property of everyone, the pride of local people in particular and thanh tra growers throughout the province in general. The festival would be a unique tourism product of the locality, promoting Thuy Bieu tourism by associating the community with the model of garden houses, ancient ruong houses, and indigenous culture. Hopefully, it would contribute to the general tourism development of the city and the whole province.

In addition to many programs, this year's festival highlighted the offering ritual of thanh tra fruit to the Royal Palace. Departing from Luong Quan communal house (Thuy Bieu ward, Hue city), the delegation, which consisted of the flag and court music teams, as well as the leading seniors who brought with them hundreds of carefully selected thanh tra fruits, walked down the green village pathways before boarding the boats to sail down along the Huong River and enter the Royal Palace. Legend has it that the fruit exclusively offered to the King should be medium and similar in size, with thin peel and a distinctive scent of essential oil while having sweet taste and long pulp segments.

After the journey along the poetic river, the delegation stopped on the bank of the Perfume River, in front of An Hien garden house where the group continued to walk along the river bank to Quang Duc gate and perform the hand-over ceremonies (including Thướng Hương (incense-offering ritual), Thướng Tửu (wine-offering ritual), Thướng Quả (fruit-offering ritual), Nhận Quả (fruit-receiving ritual) to the palace’s guards at Ngo Mon Gate. After these rituals, thanh tra would be offered to Thế Miếu and Triệu Miếu (the ancestral temples).

Thua Thien Hue Online has recorded the festive scenes at thanh tra grapefruit festival:

Visitors choosing to buy thanh tra at market stalls within the festival

Selected thanh tra ready to be offered to the Kings

The ‘thanh tra offering to the King’ boat delegation moving on the Perfume River

After the journey along the poetic river, the delegation stopped on the bank of the Perfume River, in front of An Hien garden house where the group continued to walk along the river bank to Quang Duc gate and perform the hand-over ceremonies

The delegation entering Ngo Mon Gate

According to historical records, under the Nguyen Dynasty, thanh tra was a well-known specialty of the Thua Thien government, so each year the offering ritual was always held in this way. 

After performing the rituals, thanh tra will be offered to Thế Miếu and Triệu Miếu (the ancestral temples)

The delegation performed rituals in front of Ngo Mon Gate

Reception ritual took place right at Ngo Mon Gate. Fruit offering ritual was carried out exactly as documented in historical records. On behalf of the royal Court, their guards would receive the offerings.

Some programs in the festival:

• Opening ceremony at 7.30am on 31/8

• Thanh tra offering ritual to the Royal Citadel at Luong Quan communal house at 9:30AM on 31/8

• Tasty fruit contest at 2PM on 31/8

• Displaying, introducing, and discovering the special thanh tra tree, from 3 - 4PM on 31/8

• Performing arts festival to celebrate the 6th thanh tra Hue Festival 2018 at 7PM on 31/8

• The 3rd singing competition of red-whiskered bulbul birds - 2018 at 8AM on 1/9

• The contest for family meals at 2:30PM on 1/9

• Displaying, introducing, and discovering the special thanh tra tree, from 3 - 4PM on 1/9

• Musical performance and cultural program at 7PM on 1/9

• Cooking contest using the tasty thanh tra, at 8AM on 2/9

• Performing art program and closing ceremony, at 5PM on 2/9

 

All programs will be held at Nguyen Van Troi Junior High School, 540 Bui Thi Xuan street, Hue city. In addition, during the festival to the end of September 2nd, there will be some other activities to display agricultural and handicraft products, introduce special cuisines and local folk games. More specially, when visitors want to pay a visit to thanh tra gardens and other famous tourist attractions within the ward, there will be electric car service provided by Hoang Thanh Company.

Posted by NHAT MINH

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