The sartorial puzzle is solved: Mo Yan, this year's winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, is taking five outfits in both traditional Chinese and Western styles to receive the award.
Mo's wardrobe for the trip became the subject of much Internet debate in China, with some unhappy over earlier reports he would wear a tuxedo because it wouldn't be uniquely Chinese.
China's first Nobel laureate will leave today for Sweden with his wife and daughter. Translators for several languages including English will accompany him, said Shao Chunsheng, an official with Mo's hometown of Gaomi City in Shandong Province.
"He may dress in a tailor-made tuxedo prepared by his daughter while attending the award ceremony," Shao said.
"He has prepared five outfits, including a tuxedo, Western-style suit and 'Mao suit,' for different activities," Shao added.
The Mao suit is a tunic suit popularized by China's revolutionary forerunner Dr Sun Yat-sen. It is known in the West as an icon of China and an Eastern counterpart to the Western business suit from 1950s to early 1980s.
Some netizens unhappy over the tuxedo have been trying different Chinese-style clothes on edited images of the author on the Internet, saying they would make him stand out.
One photo showed Mo in a loose-fitting robe worn by the Chinese for over 3,000 years before the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).
The writer has learned to waltz because Swedish king and queen will also attend the ceremony, set for December 10, Qilu Evening News reported.
Mo Yan, a pseudonym for Guan Moye, was born in 1955 and grew up in Gaomi.
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