Today is the Mid-autumn Festival of China and I read an article of a Taiwanese scholar telling that his research finds Moon Festival is more better known to English speakers than Mid-autumn Festival, a coined phrase by Chinese, because some authoritative dicitionaries have the entry of the former but not of the latter.

But I want to tell him that in our English textbook co-authored by Chinese and English native authors, we get only Mid-autumn Festival and never knows there is a name as "Moon Festival", perhaps it is a holiday of Indians living in Peru or Venezuela.

2 Answers 2


Many, probably most, English speakers will have little or no awareness of this festival under either name, so when referring to it for a general English-language audience, it will be a good practice to include some explanation or description of the general nature or purpose of the festival, and where and when it is celebrated. A transliteration of the name of the festival in Chinese may be a good idea as well.


While there are many autumnal festivals across the English-speaking world, each tends to have its own name and is known primarily in its own area.
For example: Somerset Carnivals, Tar Barrel Rolling or even the more widely known Guy Fawkes Night.

Similar festivals in non-English speaking parts of the world would be referred to in English by the local name, or a translation of it. Whether Moon Festival or Mid-Autumn Festival is better known is simply a matter of whether people know about them.

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