Chinese Kitchen God Holiday Card
c1920. This item is the paper effigy of the Chinese Kitchen God, that is placed above the fireplace at the start of the new year. The Chinese Kitchen God, who is most often called Zhang Lang, but sometimes referred to as Zao Jun or Zao Shen, would record the household's activities throughout the year and then report them to the Jade Emperor, the Emperor of the Heavens. The Emperor in return would either reward or punish the family based upon that report. This effigy depicts the Kitchen God and his wife above a roaring fire with two Chinese men beside the flames. The illustration is full of color and has a red and gilded border. At the base of the illustration is a small description of the Chinese New Year and how the Chinese people pay their respects to the Kitchen God. On the back of this card it states "A Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year", with an image of a traditional Chinese Dragon on red paper with gilded specks. This Kitchen God was most likely a holiday/Christmas card meant to be given out by Chinese Americans to their non-Chinese friends. Measures 6 1/2" x 4 3/4" (folded), 12 3/4" x 9 3/4" Separation at folds. The card is made up of two papers that have been pasted together, and as such the Kitchen Witch size has become slightly loose around the center fold. Paper is toned due to age.