National Etiquette in Chinese Tradition
Grand national etiquettes are the ceremonies held by sovereigns in ancient history to worship heaven, earth, mountains, ancestors, celestial, religious deities, etc.
Some routinely auspicious etiquette is regarding pursuing stable governance, well-being, harvest, and protection.
Meanwhile, some rites are held to pray for particular current occurrences, like drought, flood, disease, war, etc.
Part of the Painting "Yongzheng Ji Xian Nong Tan Tu", About Yongzheng Emperor Worshiping the Deities of Agriculture in the Temple of Agriculture (Xian Nong Tan) of Beijing to Pray for Harvest — Palace Museum
Among different types of auspicious ceremonies in the history of China, the most honorable one was the Rite of Feng Shan on Mount Tai, which some outstanding emperors did before, to show their exceptional power and achievement to the world.
Military etiquette in the history of China included military-related wars, parades, taxes, periodic hunting, instruction activities, and the border definition.
Pre-Battle Military Rituals
In ancient Chinese culture, there should be some ceremonies before the battle, usually offering sacrificial rituals to the heaven, earth, ancestors, Gods of War, and the ensign, on a day chosen through divination.
Offering sacrifice rites to heaven meant to report the battle under the name of heaven and justice;
To the earth, meaning the battle was to protect the homeland and pray for protection;
To the ancestors and Gods of War, it was to inform the upcoming battle and pray for good luck.
In these rites, blood (usually animals) was always needed to sacrifice the ensign.
Afterward, a strong pledge statement would be announced to inform soldiers of the battle’s goal, reasons, and necessary rules and mobilize and encourage them for the upcoming war.
Post-Battle Military Ceremonies
If a regime won, the emperor would send honorable prime ministers and nobles to welcome his army; sometimes, emperors would do this in person.
Then there would be a big ceremony to inform the heaven, earth, and ancestors about the success.
Sometimes the victorious army would also dedicate enslaved people to the emperor.
Later, countless solemn awards and feasts of celebration will be held for these excellent generals and soldiers.
If they failed in a war, the army would return wearing mourning clothes, crying, and memorializing the dead, as in a funeral ceremony.