The identical sound of the words ‘fish’ (yu) 鱼 and the word 余 (yu), meaning ‘extra’, ‘surplus’ have made fish an indispensable component in the Chinese New Year’s celebration. The symbolic meanings of ‘fish’ throughout Chinese tradition are prosperity and wealth.
During the holiday season, paintings of happy Babies riding fish ( all carps) are the most popular family decorations. The Lotus flower always goes with the fish because the word of lotus 莲花(lian hua) means continues.
连年有鱼 ‘May you have surplus and remainders year after year’ is a common blessing expressed during the Chinese New Year’s celebration.