Chopsticks play an important role in Chinese food culture. Chopsticks
are called "Kuaizi" in Chinese and were called "Zhu"
in ancient times (see the characters above). Chinese people have
been using kuaizi as one of the main tableware for more than 3,000
Chopsticks can be classified into five groups based on the materials
used to make them, i.e., wood, metal, bone, stone and compound chopsticks.
Bamboo and wood chopsticks are the most popular ones used in Chinese
There are a few things to avoid when using chopsticks. Chinese
people usually don't beat their bowls while eating, since the behavior
used to be practiced by beggars. Also don't insert chopsticks in
a bowl upright because it is a custom exclusively used in sacrifice.
If you are really interested in chopsticks, you may want to visit
the Kuaizi Museum in Shanghai. The museum collected over 1,000 pairs
of chopsticks. The oldest one was from the Tang Dynasty.