The so-called “seven periods” in the traditional cantonese funeral custom refers to a person who has just passed away, counts from the day of the deceased’s death, and every seven days is a “period”, called “First Seven”, “Second Seven”, “Third Seven”, “Fourth Seven”, “Fifth Seven”, “Sixth Seven” and “Last Seven” for a total of 49 days. After ‘seven periods’, it’s 100 days, followed by 1 year, and three years.

In these three years, apart from worshiping the ‘seven periods’, 100 days, 1 year and 3 years, the family also observe some traditional etiquette and rules. For example, the family cannot celebrate happy events, cannot visit relatives and friends including cannot celebrate public holidays etc. This is what they call to keep filial piety (mourning) for 3 years.

The significance of worshiping the “seven periods” is actually a kind of thought and respect for the deceased. The worship rituals and offerings also vary and are not regulated. Normal worshipping is just offering of joss sticks and prepare some deceased’s favourite food as offerings. Most will pay attention to “First, third, fifth and last Seven”.

The following sharing is for your reference.

Worshipping on the First Seven to Last Seven periods.

Worshipping on the 100 days, 1 year and 3 years.


传统广东丧事习俗里所谓的‘七期’ ,七天谓一期。就是指刚去世的人,从去世那天算起到第七天为第一个七(头七),然后第十四天为第二个七 (二七),一直接下去的每隔七天,到第四十九天(七七或尾七)。过了‘七期’,就到百日,对年, 然后就是三年。