Hansik is 105 days after Dongji and is one of the four major festive holidays including Seollal, Dano, and Chuseok. The term Hansik is derived from an old custom of not lighting fire, thus eating cold food. It is said that the origin of this holiday goes back to ancient China where the day was made to console Gaechachu, a loyal subject of Jin. Being chased by a treacherous subject, Gaechachu was in hiding at Mount Myun. Knowing Gaechachu’s loyalty, Mungong went to find Gaechachu only to return with nothing. Mungong’s last attempt to find Gaechachu was by setting fire to the mountain. Yet Gaechachu did not come out and was burned alive. Ever since then people had a custom of eating cold rice to commemorate his death.
This day, the country holds sacrificial rites at Jongmyo (Royal Shrine) and Neungwon. Citizens hold their own memorial services and visit their families’ ancestral graves. If the grave is worn they lay fresh turf in a custom called Gaesacho. People also plant trees around the grave. Farmers also spread seeds from the farmhouse.