Chinese Valentine's Day, telling a famous love story

August 16, 2010 | Posted by Sarah

Cowherd and Weaving Maid meet each other on the 7th day of the 7th lunar month by crossing the magpie bridge

Today is the seventh day of the seventh lunar month. It is a special day: Chinese Valentine's Day.There is a well-known love story for this day.


It was said that the Emperor of Heaven had seven daughters, all of whom were pretty and smart. The youngest one was the prettiest and best at handcrafting, especially weaving clothing. So she was called Weaving Maid. She lived in the heaven and weaved colorful clouds to beautify the world.

On the earth, there lived a poor orphaned boy. He owned an old ox and needed to work on the farm's field with the ox everyday to make a living So he was called Cowherd. His daily life was just like in a Cinderella story. But he was kind and honest and was favored by local residents.

One day, Weaving Maid secretly, together with her six sisters, went down to the earth to have fun. They met the cowherd. After a series of interesting things, Weaving Maid fell in love with him and married him. They lived happily together on the earth for several years and had two children.

Then this was known by the Empress of the Heaven, she was so angry at Weaving Maid since she just married a common human without her consent. She came to the earth and took her back to the heaven. When Cowherd found his wife was missing. He was very sad and helpless. Suddenly his ox, which turned out to be an immortal, told him to kill it and put on its skin and then he could go to find his wife. Sadly but without choice, he did as the ox told him. When he put on the ox’s skin, he was able to fly. So he took his two children in two bamboo baskets and went to the heaven.

When the Empress of the Heaven saw him, she made a milky way in the sky with her hairpin, which kept Weaving Maid and Cowherd separated. The 7th princess was moved to the star Vega (The swooping - Eagle) in the Lyra (Harp) constellation. And the cowherd with his two children stayed in the star Altair (Flying one) in the Aquila (Eagle) constellation. The star of Vega is also known as the Weaving Maid Star and the star of Altair is as the Cowherd Star in China.

Weaving Maid and Cowherd could only watched each other across the milk may. The Empress of the Heaven only allowed them to see each other once a year of the seventh day of the seventh lunar month. Magpies were moved by their true love, so every year, many of them gathered and formed a bridge for the couple to meet on that evening.

With this love story, the 7th Day of the 7th lunar month was known as the Chinese Valentine’s Day. Lovers often watch the stars Altair and Vega and tell the story of Weaving Maid and Cowherd in the night, hoping their love can last forever.

The seventh day of the seventh lunar month of the lunisolar calendar in the coming years:

  1. August 16, 2010 (today)
  2. August 6, 2011
  3. August 23, 2012
  4. August 13, 2013
  5. August 2, 2014
  6. August 20, 2015
  7. August 9, 2016
  8. August 28, 2017
  9. August 17, 2018
  10. August 7, 2019
  11. August 25, 2020

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