Lieu Doi Nam Dinh wrestling competition - Vietnam festival info
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Lieu Doi Nam Dinh wrestling competition

In the afternoon of the 4th, the tent is pitched and the stage of wrestle - competition is driven in a stake. The tent is made of bamboo and fiberboard with the god's altar and votive tablet put inside. The god here is the ancestor of wrestling. It was said that, in Lieu Doi, there was a young man whose surname was Doan. He was handsome, strong with his walk like tiger manner field went up in flames all of a sudden. Inside it, there was a weighty precious sword and a pink handkerchief. Every one would like to take them out but only Doan surnamed man had strong enough with bravery and intelligence to rush into the flame and obtained them. He raised the sword to beseach the god and held the handkerchief high up over his head to pray for getting stronger since then, he fell into the passion for practising martial exercises and set up a guild of wrestling captivating a lot of young men.

When the country encountered foreign enemies, he and his friends took part in the fight and made several brilliant exploits. The woman general, whose surname was Bui, of excellent martial arts, having the respect for his talent, so she volunteered to get married to him. Unfortunately, in a battle, the man died. The woman general was so compassionate that she also died on the horse's back on the way to visit his grave. People in the village all took pity on both woman of beauty and man of talent, they buried them considerately and built shrines for them called gentleman shrine and lady shrine. They were also considered to be god and Fairy. Later, people here hold annual festival of wrestling, also called "God and Fairy festival" in memory of two heroes.

In the morning of the 5th, the. procession is implemented led by an old man holding a bare sword, followed by two rows of assistants with 18 persons of each wearing martial clothes and holding torches in their hands. A torch will be fired when the ceremony starts symbolizing for the flame of the former wood terraced field. The sounds of drums and gongs arise, the leader of the procession will show some actions and gives the sword to a young wrestlier - who won prize last competition. This action remains of the scene in which how Doan surnamed boy to achieve the sacred sword and become brave man. Each other wrestlier carries a . red flag and goes and dances according to drums towards the stage of wrestling competition. Along with drum - sound, the sound of gongs and cymbals also arise from neighbouring temples and pagodas like a support, an excite.

Lieu Doi wrestliers advance into the stage for performance. The westliers from other regions are also greeted ardently. Before the fight begins, all competitions have to perform an action called "bai to" in order to represent their belief in magic strength which will come to them and also to greet audiences. The match is controlled by a vigorous ex- wrestlier. The special point of these matches is that both winners and the defeated are rewarded by the people in the village and visitors1 contributions. Another interesting point is that there is always a pretty girl standing by the gate leading to stages of wrestling. She holds a bunch of burning joss - sticks and gives one to each wrestlier before beginning the match.

There are three kinds of prizes. A special prize, followed by three outstanding prizes: first prize, second prize and third prize. Then comes the festival prize which is bestowed to all participants, both winners and losers. This is essential as the festival is designed to encourage people's enthusiasm for wrestling.

It is can be said that, in many different festivals of over country, competitions of wrestling are usually held but it is just a decorating element and contributes more ardent for the festivals with several other games. In Lieu Doi alone, competitions like this is the whole content the ceremony. This point itself creates distinctive and original feature of this festival.