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Lunar New Year gets mascots

For the first time, the Chinese Lunar New Year is to get official mascots. “Nian Wa” and “Chun Ni” - meaning “New Year Boy” and “Spring Maiden” are two mythical beings regarded as symbols of good luck and happiness.

The China International Culture Exchange Association started soliciting designs for a New-Year symbol in early 2014 and chose these from more than 2,000 applications. The figures also symbolize a balance of “Yin” and “Yang”, and the patterns on their costume – a bat, and two fish, respectively – are auspicious signs of longevity and prosperity in Chinese folklore.

On the same day, China Post also released a collection of commemorative stamps featuring the two mascots. This year, the Chinese New Year falls on Feb 8.