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Are chairs really ordinary?


In modern society, the chairs that people use every day and everywhere are not originated in China. It was introduced into the Central Plains from the Western Regions during the Tang Dynasty. But don't underestimate this "outdoor household". The popularity of chairs not only fundamentally changes the Chinese sitting posture, but also has a great impact on ancient Chinese culture.

1. Lifestyle is greatly changed

In fact, the chair introduced to the Central Plains in the Tang Dynasty, whose real name is called "Hu bed", is a folding bench, a bit like the "Mazaer" as the old Beijingers said. Before it did not appear, the traditional sitting posture of Chinese people on formal occasions was kneeling, which is a posture that requires quite a lot of physical strength and tolerance. It is similar to the custom of kneeling on the ground today, but To be honest, this sitting position is really not a comfortable posture.

The emergence of "hu bed" has greatly improved the comfort level of "sitting", and people gradually began to give up the uncomfortable posture of kneeling and sitting. The emergence of four-legged furniture, such as a chair, first of all impacted the Chinese culture of sitting ceremony. The change in sitting posture has directly caused many changes in social etiquette. People's legs have been liberated, and many important rituals and daily communication have undergone great changes. The etiquette based on kneeling has gradually become a guest set based on sitting.

The emergence of chairs not only affects living habits, but also affects many aspects of home design, such as the interior design of the room, the position of the window is obviously higher than in the past, people do not need to reserve too much space for sitting on the floor. As a result, the number has increased, the layout is more compact and reasonable, and the connotation of people living at home has become more abundant.

Prior to the Tang Dynasty, people were sitting on their knees, so the furniture was generally short, and the height of common books was similar to the height of the Kang table in the countryside. After the emergence of chairs, people's sitting posture also rose, and some tall furniture became popular. It did n’t take long for the table to emerge, and it gradually became the protagonist in daily life. The type gradually changed from a simple rule to a reading desk, a tea table, and a dining table. Life has also undergone a series of changes, making the appliance more functional and more sophisticated and practical.

2. Subversion of dining and social habits

Before the chairs did not appear, due to the common sitting posture of kneeling, and the fact that people wore wrapped skirts underneath, it was really difficult to sit around together, so before Tang Dynasty, meals were divided into separate meals. The emergence of chairs and high tables laid the foundation for sitting around eating and socializing. People began to sit by a table in twos and threes, but before the Eight Immortals table appeared, it was not easy to sit down and eat together on a large scale. Until the Liao and Jin Dynasties, when the Eight Immortals table was born, the Chinese gradually evolved from the previous meal-sharing system to the meal-sharing system.

Do n’t think that the popularity of the meal-sharing system has only changed the way you eat. In fact, it has changed the social habits of the Chinese people from a long-distance social gathering to a close gathering. The distance from people has changed from "you can't play far away", and you can change your cups and put your hands together. Since then, not only has the party dinner become the norm, but also developed "playing eight circles", such a classic way of entertainment, it can be described as a radical change in the Chinese way of life.