Kitchen God Plaque
According to Chinese folk religion, the Kitchen God is stationed in every household throughout the year to keep track of each family’s acts of kindness or malice. On the 23rd (for northern Chinese people) or 24th day (for southern Chinese people) of the 12th month on the lunar calendar, he returns to the heavens to report back to the Jade Emperor regarding people’s behavior so that the Jade Emperor can determine whether to reward or punish the family in the upcoming year. At the end of the year, families clean the Kitchen God’s altar, prepare fresh fruits, food, and wine for offering, and light incense for him as a send-off for his journey to the heavens and to gain his favor.
Additionally, he manages the fire in the kitchen hearth and/or stove in each household. Due to how closely tied he is to our daily lives, the kitchen god is one of the most widely worshipped deities in Chinese households and is seen as the protector of the house.
The characters on the plaque, 定福灶君, means “Kitchen God (灶君) who determines (定) fortune (福).” This is because the Kitchen God’s report on each family is what the Jade Emperor uses to determine the family’s fortune.
L- 13.75”, W- 5.875”, Thickness- 1”