- The novel coronavirus outbreak has affected one of the most important cultural holidays in the Chinese culture: Lunar New Year.
- After unprecedented quarantines were imposed throughout the country, people are prevented from traveling to see their families during the holiday.
- Here are photos comparing last year's celebration — complete with Chinese lions, historical dances, and family time — to this year.
- Visit Insider's homepage for more.
The novel coronavirus outbreak in China began in tandem with a significant holiday in the Chinese culture: the Lunar New Year.
Parts of China went under unprecedented quarantines in hopes of stemming the spread of the disease, known as 2019-nCoV, affecting nearly 50 million people in the country.
The Lunar New Year celebration traditionally calls for parades, outdoor festivals, and lanterns throughout the city, as people gather with their families to celebrate the annual holiday.
But in light of the Wuhan coronavirus that has killed 170 people and infected more than 7,900 as of Thursday, cities around the country are forced to cancel one of the most important cultural events of the year.
Here are photos comparing last year's celebration — complete with Chinese lions, historical dances, and family time — to this year.
2019: Crowds gather in Ditan Park in Beijing, China.
Thomas Peter/Reuters2020: Ditan Park is eerily empty as workers took down the lantern decorations after the Lunar New Year celebration was cancelled.
Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters2019: Signs with the Chinese character "Fu," which means "Good luck," hang in the Forbidden City.
Jason Lee/Reuters2020: Doctors hold up the same sign in the hospital while treating coronavirus patients.
THE CENTRAL HOSPITAL OF WUHAN VIA WEIBO via Reuters2019: Folk artists perform a traditional lion dance.
Reuters2020: A Chinese tourist wearing a mask is flanked by two lions at Suvarnabhumi Airport in Thailand.
Soe Zeya Tun/Reuters2019: Tourists can be seen in the Forbidden City during the Lunar New Year.
Jason Lee/Reuters2020: Police wearing masks stand in front of the Tiananmen Gate outside of the Forbidden City.
Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters2019: Passengers traveling for the Lunar New Year pack into the Hengyang Railway Station.
Stringer/Reuters2020: Passengers are getting screened for the coronavirus at the Hangzhou Railway Station.
China Daily via Reuters2019: Performers are seen outside a temple after re-enacting a Chinese New Year Qing Dynasty ceremony.
Thomas Peter/Reuters2020: People stand outside the gate of a temple that was closed for safety concerns following the coronavirus outbreak.
Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters2019: A woman prays with incense in her hands.
Jorge Silva/Reuters2020: Two men, one of whom is wearing a mask, do the same.
Ajeng Dinar Ulfiana/Reuters
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