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Chinese Kite
Dragon of Kite
China Information - China Folk Culture and Art


The kite was invented in China. It is said that the earliest kite, known as the wooden hawk, was invented by MoZi (468-376 B.C.), a noted
philosopher during the Warring States Period. After paper was invented, in the Han Dynasty (206B.C. – A.D.220), the kite became known as the
paper hawk because its frame was covered with paper. Bamboo pipes were later fitted to the head of paper hawks. The pipes would whistle in the
wind, making a sound like that of a Zheng, a stringed musical instrument similar to the zither. Thus, the kite was also called the wind zheng. When
the kite was first invented, it was used for military purposes, such as measuring distances, delivering messages, flying over places of difficult
access. In the Tang and Song dynasties (618-1279), kite flying was popular among the people. Marco Polo, an Italian traveler, came to China
where he worked as an official for 17 years during the Yuan Dynasty (1206-1368). When he returned home, he introduced the kite to the West.
Later, the kite was introduced to other parts of the world and kite flying has ever since become a favorite way of recreation and fitkeeping among
the people in the world. At present, kites from Weifang of Shandong Province and Beijing are the best-known.


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