13 June 2011

Things Mexico Stole from China: Piñatas

See Here
OK not exactly. What I meant to say was that the Piñata may have been developed independently in both Meso-America and China. Piñatas were created in Meso-America in pre-columbian times out of clay pots in the shape of their gods that would be swung at with sticks until they broke, releasing pastries symbolizing their god showering them with wealth. But it is also believed that it could have also come about in China. During the Spring Festival (Chinese New Year) Marco Polo's diaries described them as hanging paper figures in the shape of oxen or other animals (probably according to the zodiac) which would be struck by Mandarins, releasing seeds. The "pinata" would then be burned and the ashes gathered for good luck. However I would be skeptical, as there are no oral or written records (that I know of) that document this practice, and the Chinese were very good at writing their history down.

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