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The custom of hitting ball and despoiling phet

Wednesday, 22/01/2014

The custom of hitting ball and despoiling phet is happened on every January 7th in Dong Lai temple in Lap Thach district`s Ban Gian commune. The rites of hitting ball despoiling phet is carried out in parallel by their two forms at the same time:

Some able-bodied men, naked on the upper half, despoil the ball made of rare wood with a diameter of 35cm (by hand).

The other able-bodied men carry curved 1.2m high Mong Phet of made from bamboo foot engraved the head of a dragon horse. They carry it to run after the ball despoiling person. If one can catch the ball, he will strike bows and pull down the ball with hook.

After the great grandparents finish kowtowing to the memory of the ancestors, the ball and two Phet are put on a palanquin parking in the front yard of the communal house. After three gong voices, Cu Menh (a great grandparent) takes the ball to go in the space under the palanquin. Hundreds of able-bodied men naked on upper half, wearing loin- clothes and winding red turbans round their heads are readily waiting in front of the palanquin. When Cu Menh cries out the miracle: "receive ball", a young man rushes in to take the ball and run toward the entrance. Everybody runs after him to pull about the ball and makes it transferred under the command of a flag bringing person. This man who has got a strong physical appearance, loud voice resounded like thunder, red belt, crosswise turban on the head and his leg is put with leggings) cries out: "March ahead!". The people who bring Mong Phet run after and surround the ball despoiling person. The atmosphere of the spring festival is then really animated.

It is about 250m long from the entrance of the communal house to Mo Phet which is1.5 m high on a field of 240 m2. When the palanquin is taken to Mo Phet, the strongest able-bodied men put the ball on the peak of the Mo Phet. Cu Menh brings the Phet to do the act of completion. Then there are continuous voices of drum. After three times of palanquin receiving to the temple, the free ball-despoiling crowd continues to pile on each other. The ball can only been taken into the temple until 6-7pm every year. Then the able-bodied men who can despoil the ball will be awarded. All of them are glued with mire but look jolly in the mood of victors. The custom of hitting ball and despoiling Phet is the review of land defense of former generals in Hung Vuong`s times. The atmosphere of the whole people to practice to fight the aggressors has been still warm in the memory of the masses.

Vinh Phuc News (According to vinhphuc.tourism.vn)


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