To receive a visit from the feng-hwang was to be looked on favourably by the gods, and if the bird visited the Emperor’s garden it meant that the ruler’s reign was just. No celebration was felt to be complete unless the feng-hwang graced the festivities with its presence. Its appearance at a wedding was considered especially auspicious, for the bird was believed to symbolize perfect love.
Sadly, these dazzling and benevolent creatures were not long-lived. But it is said that when a feng-hwang died, a hundred birds of the air would peck a hole in the earth so that it could be properly buried."