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CARNIVAL (see other spellings and names ) is a Western Christian festive season that occurs before the liturgical season of Lent . The main events typically occur during February or early March, during the period historically known as Shrovetide
Shrovetide
(or Pre-Lent). Carnival typically involves a public celebration and/or parade combining some elements of a circus , masks, and a public street party . People wear masks and costumes during many such celebrations, allowing them to lose their everyday individuality and experience a heightened sense of social unity. Excessive consumption of alcohol, meat, and other foods proscribed during Lent is extremely common. Other common features of carnival include mock battles such as food fights; social satire and mockery of authorities; the grotesque body displaying exaggerated features, especially large noses, bellies, mouths, and phalli, or elements of animal bodies; abusive language and degrading acts; depictions of disease and gleeful death; and a general reversal of everyday rules and norms.

The term Carnival
Carnival
is traditionally used in areas with a large Catholic
Catholic
presence. However, the Philippines
Philippines
, a predominantly Roman Catholic
Catholic
country, does not celebrate Carnival
Carnival
anymore since the dissolution of the Manila Carnival
Carnival
after 1939, the last carnival in the country. In historically Lutheran
Lutheran
countries, the celebration is known as Fastelavn , and in areas with a high concentration of Anglicans and Methodists , pre-Lenten celebrations, along with penitential observances, occur on Shrove Tuesday . In Slavic Eastern Orthodox nations, Maslenitsa is celebrated during the last week before Great Lent . In German-speaking Europe and the Netherlands, the Carnival
Carnival
season traditionally opens on 11/11 (often at 11:11 a.m.). This dates back to celebrations before the Advent
Advent
season or with harvest celebrations of St. Martin\'s Day .

Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro
in Brazil
Brazil
is the biggest in the world, followed jointly by Barranquilla
Barranquilla
, Colombia
Colombia
and the Notting Hill Carnival in London
London
.

CONTENTS

* 1 Etymology

* 2 History

* 2.1 Origin * 2.2 Development

* 3 Theories

* 4 Geographic distribution

* 4.1 Africa

* 4.1.1 Cape Verde Islands * 4.1.2 Seychelles * 4.1.3 Zimbabwe

* 4.2 Asia

* 4.2.1 Indonesia
Indonesia
* 4.2.2 India * 4.2.3 Israel * 4.2.4 Turkey

* 4.3 Europe

* 4.3.1 Belgium
Belgium
* 4.3.2 Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
* 4.3.3 Croatia
Croatia
* 4.3.4 Cyprus
Cyprus
* 4.3.5 Czech Republic
Czech Republic
* 4.3.6 Denmark
Denmark
and Norway
Norway
* 4.3.7 England
England
* 4.3.8 France
France

* 4.3.9 Germany, Switzerland, and Austria
Austria

* 4.3.9.1 Germany
Germany
* 4.3.9.2 "Rheinische" Carnival
Carnival
(Fasching) * 4.3.9.3 "Swabian-Alemannic" Carnival
Carnival
(Schwäbische Fastnacht) * 4.3.9.4 Swiss Fasnacht

* 4.3.10 Greece
Greece
* 4.3.11 Hungary
Hungary
* 4.3.12 Italy * 4.3.13 Lithuania
Lithuania
* 4.3.14 Luxembourg
Luxembourg
* 4.3.15 Malta
Malta
* 4.3.16 Netherlands * 4.3.17 Poland
Poland

* 4.3.18 Portugal
Portugal

* 4.3.18.1 Lazarim * 4.3.18.2 Azores
Azores
* 4.3.18.3 Madeira
Madeira
* 4.3.18.4 Other regions

* 4.3.19 Republic of Macedonia
Republic of Macedonia
* 4.3.20 Russia * 4.3.21 Slovakia
Slovakia
* 4.3.22 Slovenia
Slovenia

* 4.3.23 Spain

* 4.3.23.1 Andalusia * 4.3.23.2 Canary Islands
Canary Islands
* 4.3.23.3 Catalonia
Catalonia
* 4.3.23.4 Valencian Community

* 4.4 North America

* 4.4.1 Caribbean
Caribbean

* 4.4.1.1 Aruba
Aruba
* 4.4.1.2 Antigua
Antigua
* 4.4.1.3 Barbados
Barbados
* 4.4.1.4 Belize
Belize
* 4.4.1.5 Dominica
Dominica
* 4.4.1.6 Dominican Republic
Dominican Republic
* 4.4.1.7 Haiti
Haiti
* 4.4.1.8 Jamaica
Jamaica
* 4.4.1.9 Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago

* 4.4.2 Guatemala
Guatemala
* 4.4.3 Honduras
Honduras
* 4.4.4 Nicaragua
Nicaragua
* 4.4.5 Mexico
Mexico
* 4.4.6 Panama
Panama
* 4.4.7 Bahamas
Bahamas
* 4.4.8 Canada

* 4.4.9 United States

* 4.4.9.1 Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico

* 4.5 South America

* 4.5.1 Argentina
Argentina
* 4.5.2 Bolivia
Bolivia

* 4.5.3 Brazil
Brazil

* 4.5.3.1 Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro
* 4.5.3.2 Recife, Pernambuco * 4.5.3.3 Salvador, Bahia

* 4.5.4 Colombia
Colombia
* 4.5.5 Ecuador
Ecuador
* 4.5.6 French Guiana
French Guiana

* 4.5.7 Peru
Peru

* 4.5.7.1 Cajamarca * 4.5.7.2 Violence

* 4.5.8 Uruguay * 4.5.9 Venezuela
Venezuela

* 5 See also * 6 Notes * 7 References * 8 External links

ETYMOLOGY

The Latin
Latin
-derived name of the holiday is sometimes also spelled Carnaval, typically in areas where Dutch , German , French , Spanish , and Portuguese are spoken, or Carnevale in Italian -speaking contexts. Alternative names are used for regional and local celebrations.

The origin may be from the Italian word carne (meat) or carrus (car). The former suggests an origin within Christianity, while the alternative links to earlier religions.

Folk etymologies state that the word comes from the Late Latin expression carne vale, which means "farewell to meat", signifying the approaching fast. The word carne may also be translated as flesh, producing "a farewell to the flesh", a phrase embraced by certain carnival celebrants to embolden the festival's carefree spirit. However, this interpretation is not supported by philological evidence.

The Italian carne levare is one possible origin, meaning "to remove meat", since meat is prohibited during Lent.

Other scholars argue for the origin from the Roman name for the festival of the Navigium Isidis
Navigium Isidis
("ship of Isis"), where the image of Isis
Isis
was carried to the seashore to bless the start of sailing season. The festival consisted of a parade of masks following an adorned wooden boat, possibly source of the floats .

HISTORY

ORIGIN

From the anthropological point of view, carnival is a reversal ritual, in which social roles are reversed and norms about desired behavior are suspended.

Winter was thought of as the reign of the winter spirits; these needed to be driven out in order for the summer to return. Carnival can thus be regarded as a rite of passage from darkness to light, from winter to summer: a fertility celebration, the first spring festival of the new year.

Traditionally, a carnival feast was the last opportunity for common people to eat well, as there was typically a food shortage at the end of the winter as stores ran out. Until spring produce was available, people were limited to the minimum necessary meals during this period. On what nowadays is called vastenavond (the days before fasting ), all the remaining winter stores of lard, butter, and meat which were left would be eaten, for these would otherwise soon start to rot and decay. The selected livestock had already been slaughtered in November and the meat would be no longer preservable. All the food that had survived the winter had to be eaten to assure that everyone was fed enough to survive until the coming spring would provide new food sources.

Several Germanic tribes celebrated the returning of the daylight. The winter would be driven out, to make sure that fertility could return in spring. A central figure of this ritual was possibly the fertility goddess Nerthus . Also, there are some indications that the effigy of Nerthus or Freyr was placed on a ship with wheels and accompanied by a procession of people in animal disguise and men in women's clothes. Aboard the ship a marriage would be consummated as a fertility ritual .

Tacitus
Tacitus
wrote in his Germania : Germania 9.6: Ceterum nec cohibere parietibus deos neque in ullam humani oris speciem adsimulare ex magnitudine caelestium arbitrator – "The Germans, however, do not consider it consistent with the grandeur of celestial beings to confine the gods within walls, or to liken them to the form of any human countenance." Germania 40: mox vehiculum et vestis et, si credere velis, numen ipsum secreto lacu abluitur – "Afterwards the car, the vestments, and, if you like to believe it, the divinity herself, are purified in a secret lake."

Traditionally, the feast also was a time to indulge sexual desires , which were supposed to be suppressed during the following fasting. Before Lent began, all rich food and drink were consumed in what became a giant celebration that involved the whole community, and is thought to be the origin of Carnival.

In many Christian sermons and texts, the example of a vessel is used to explain Christian doctrine: "the nave of the church of baptism", "the ship of Mary ", etc. The writings show that processions with ship-like carts were held and lavish feasts were celebrated on the eve of Lent or the greeting of spring in the early Middle Ages. The Catholic
Catholic
church condemned this "devilish debauchery" and "pagan rituals". As early as the year 325, the First Council of Nicaea attempted to end these pagan festivals.

The Lenten period of the liturgical calendar , the six weeks directly before Easter
Easter
, was historically marked by fasting, study, and other pious or penitential practices. During Lent, no parties or celebrations were held, and people refrained from eating rich foods, such as meat, dairy, fat, and sugar. The first three classes were often totally unavailable during this period because of late winter shortages.

While Christian festivals such as Corpus Christi were church-sanctioned celebrations, Carnival
Carnival
was also a manifestation of European folk culture . In the Christian tradition, the fasting is to commemorate the 40 days that Jesus fasted in the desert , according to the New Testament
New Testament
, and also to reflect on Christian values. It was a time for adult converts to prepare for baptism at Easter. As with other Christian festivals such as Christmas
Christmas
, which was originally a pagan midwinter festival, the Christian church has found it easier to absorb the pagan Carnaval into its religious tradition than to eliminate it.

Carnival
Carnival
in the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
took not just a few days, but almost the entire period between Christmas
Christmas
and the beginning of Lent. In those two months, Catholic
Catholic
populations used several Catholic
Catholic
holidays as an outlet for their daily frustrations.

Many synods and councils attempted to set things "right". Caesarius of Arles (470–542) protested around 500 CE in his sermons against the pagan practices. Centuries later, his statements were adapted as the building blocks of the Indiculus superstitionum et paganiarum ("small index of superstitious and pagan practices"), which was drafted by the Synod
Synod
of Leptines in 742. It condemned the Spurcalibus en februario.

Pope
Pope
Gregory the Great
Gregory the Great
(590–604) decided that fasting would start on Ash Wednesday. The whole Carnival
Carnival
event was set before the fasting, to set a clear division between the pagan and the Christian custom. It was also the custom during Carnival
Carnival
that the ruling class would be mocked using masks and disguises .

In the year 743, the synod in Leptines (Leptines is located near Binche
Binche
in Belgium) spoke out furiously against the excesses in the month of February. Also from the same period dates the phrase: "Whoever in February by a variety of less honorable acts tries to drive out winter is not a Christian, but a pagan." Confession books from around 800 contain more information about how people would dress as an animal or old woman during the festivities in January and February, even though this was a sin with no small penance. Also in Spain, San Isidoro de Sevilla complained in his writings in the seventh century of people coming out into the streets disguised in many cases as the opposite gender.

DEVELOPMENT

Gradually, the ecclesiastical authority began to realize that the desired result could not be attained by banning the traditions, which eventually led to a degree of Christianization
Christianization
. The festivities became part of the liturgy and the liturgical year .

While forming an integral part of the Christian calendar, particularly in Catholic
Catholic
regions, many Carnival
Carnival
traditions resemble those antedating Christianity. Italian Carnival
Carnival
is sometimes thought to be derived from the ancient Roman festivals of Saturnalia and Bacchanalia . The Saturnalia, in turn, may be based on the Greek Dionysia
Dionysia
and Oriental festivals.

While medieval pageants and festivals such as Corpus Christi were church-sanctioned, Carnival
Carnival
was also a manifestation of medieval folk culture . Many local Carnival
Carnival
customs are claimed to derive from local pre-Christian rituals, such as elaborate rites involving masked figures in the Swabian-Alemannic Fastnacht . However, evidence is insufficient to establish a direct origin from Saturnalia or other ancient festivals. No complete accounts of Saturnalia survive, and the shared features of feasting, role reversals, temporary social equality, masks, and permitted rule-breaking do not necessarily constitute a coherent festival or link these festivals. These similarities may represent a reservoir of cultural resources that can embody multiple meanings and functions. For example, Easter
Easter
begins with the resurrection of Jesus , followed by a liminal period, and ends with rebirth. Carnival
Carnival
reverses this as King Carnival
Carnival
comes to life, and a liminal period follows before his death. Both feasts are calculated by the lunar calendar . Both Jesus and King Carnival
Carnival
may be seen as expiatory figures who make a gift to the people with their deaths. In the case of Jesus, the gift is eternal life in heaven , and in the case of King Carnival, the acknowledgement that death is a necessary part of the cycle of life. Besides Christian anti-Judaism , the commonalities between church and Carnival
Carnival
rituals and imagery suggest a common root. Christ\'s passion is itself grotesque: since early Christianity , Christ is figured as the victim of summary judgment , and is tortured and executed by Romans before a Jewish mob ("His blood is on us and on our children!" Matthew 27:24–25). Holy Week processions in Spain include crowds who vociferously insult the figure of Jesus. Irreverence, parody, degradation, and laughter at a tragicomic effigy of God can be seen as intensifications of the sacred order. In 1466, the Catholic
Catholic
Church under Pope Paul II revived customs of the Saturnalia carnival: Jews were forced to race naked through the streets of the city of Rome. "Before they were to run, the Jews were richly fed, so as to make the race more difficult for them and at the same time more amusing for spectators. They ran… amid Rome's taunting shrieks and peals of laughter, while the Holy Father stood upon a richly ornamented balcony and laughed heartily," an eyewitness reports. :74

Some of the best-known traditions, including carnal parades and masquerade balls , were first recorded in medieval Italy . The Carnival of Venice was, for a long time, the most famous carnival (although Napoleon
Napoleon
abolished it in 1797 and only in 1979 was the tradition restored). From Italy, Carnival
Carnival
traditions spread to Spain, Portugal, and France, and from France
France
to New France
New France
in North America. From Spain and Portugal, it spread with colonization to the Caribbean and Latin
Latin
America . In the early 19th century in the German Rhineland and Southern Netherlands
Southern Netherlands
, the weakened medieval tradition also revived. Continuously in the 18th and 19th centuries CE, as part of the annual Saturnalia abuse of the carnival in Rome, rabbis of the ghetto were forced to march through the city streets wearing foolish guise, jeered upon and pelted by a variety of missiles from the crowd. A petition of the Jewish community of Rome
Rome
sent in 1836 to Pope Gregory XVI to stop the annual anti-semitic Saturnalia abuse got a negation: "It is not opportune to make any innovation." :33,74–75

In the Rhineland
Rhineland
in 1823, the first modern Carnival
Carnival
parade took place in Cologne
Cologne
. The upper Rhineland
Rhineland
is mostly Protestant
Protestant
, as is most of Northern Germany
Germany
and Northern Europe . Carnaval ( Fasching
Fasching
or Fastnacht in Germany) mixed pagan traditions with Christian traditions. Pre-Lenten celebrations featured parades, costumes and masks to endure Lent's withdrawal from worldly pleasures. Riderless Racers at Rome
Rome
by Théodore Géricault
Théodore Géricault
. From the mid-15th century until 1882, spring carnival in Rome
Rome
closed with a horse race . Fifteen to 20 riderless horses, originally imported from the Barbary Coast of North Africa, ran the length of the Via del Corso , a long, straight city street, in about 2½ minutes.

Other areas developed their own traditions. In the United Kingdom, West Indian immigrants brought with them the traditions of Caribbean Carnival
Carnival
; however, the Carnivals now celebrated at Notting Hill , Leeds , Yorkshire, and other places became divorced from their religious origin and became secular events that take place in the summer months.

THEORIES

Carnival
Carnival
in Donetsk
Donetsk
, Ukraine
Ukraine
, 2010

Interpretations of Carnival
Carnival
present it as a social institution that degrades or "uncrowns" the higher functions of thought, speech, and the soul by translating them into the grotesque body , which serves to renew society and the world, as a release for impulses that threaten the social order that ultimately reinforces social norms, as a social transformation, or as a tool for different groups to focus attention on conflicts and incongruities by embodying them in "senseless" acts.

GEOGRAPHIC DISTRIBUTION

AFRICA

Cape Verde Islands

Carnival
Carnival
was introduced by Portuguese settlers. The celebration is celebrated on each of the archipelago's nine inhabited islands. In Mindelo
Mindelo
, São Vicente , groups challenge each other for a yearly prize. It has imported various Brazilian carnival traditions. The celebration in São Nicolau is more traditional, where established groups parade through the Ribeira Brava , gathering in the town square , although it has adopted drums, floats and costumes from Brazil. In São Nicolau, three groups, Copa Cabana, Estrela Azul, and Brilho Da Zona, construct a painted float using fire, newspaper for the mold, and iron and steel for structure. Carnival
Carnival
São Nicolau is celebrated over three days: dawn Saturday, Sunday afternoon, and Tuesday.

Seychelles

The Seychelles carnival began in 2011. It is held in the capital city of Victoria and takes place over three days. On Day 1, the grand opening is held in the city center near the clock tower. The second day is parade day. On Day 3, the closing ceremony is held, and a lottery winner is announced.

Zimbabwe

The Harare Carnival
Carnival
is held late in May. Events include fashion and music shows. The climax is a street party featuring costumes and music.

ASIA

Indonesia

In Indonesia
Indonesia
, the word "carnival" or karnaval is not related to pre- Lent festivities, but more to festivals in general, especially those with processions and extravagant costumes. One of the largest carnivals in Indonesia
Indonesia
is the Solo Batik Carnival
Solo Batik Carnival
, held in Solo , Central Java
Central Java
. The Jember Fashion Carnaval is held in Jember , East Java .

The Roman Catholic
Catholic
community of Kupang
Kupang
, East Nusa Tenggara , held an Easter
Easter
procession in form of an Easter
Easter
Carnival
Carnival
called Pawai Paskah Kupang.

India

Goan Christians participating at the Goan Carnival, late 20th century Revellers at the modern Goan Carnival
Carnival

In India, Carnival
Carnival
is celebrated only in the state of Goa
Goa
and a Roman Catholic
Catholic
tradition, where it is known as INTRUZ which means "swindler" while Entrudo is the appropriate word in Portuguese for "Carnival". The largest celebration takes place in the city of Panjim , which was part of Velha Conquista in Goa, but now is celebrated throughout the state. The tradition was introduced by the Portuguese who ruled Goa for over four centuries. On Tuesday preceding Ash Wednesday, the European tradition of Fat Tuesday is celebrated with the eating of crepes , also called "AleBelle". The crepes are filled with freshly grated coconut and heated condensed coconut sap that sequentially converts it into a brown sweet molasses ; additional heat concentration solidifies it to jaggery . The celebrations of Carnival peak for three days and nights and precede Ash Wednesday, when the legendary King Momo takes over the state. All-night parades occur throughout the state with bands, dances, and floats. Grand balls are held in the evenings.

Although Portugal
Portugal
introduced Christianity and the customs related to Catholic
Catholic
practice in India and Brazil, the celebrations in Goa
Goa
like Portugal
Portugal
have begun to adopt some aspects of Brazilian-style Carnival celebrations, in particular those of Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro
with sumptuous parades, samba and other musical elements.

Israel

Main article: Adloyada

Turkey

Main article: Baklahorani
Baklahorani

For almost five centuries, local Greek communities throughout Istanbul
Istanbul
celebrated Carnival
Carnival
with weeks of bawdy parades, lavish balls, and street parties. This continued for weeks before Lent. Baklahorani
Baklahorani
took place on Shrove Monday, the last day of the carnival season. The event was led by the Greek Orthodox community, but the celebrations were public and inter-communal. The final celebration was sited in the Kurtuluş
Kurtuluş
district. In 2010, the festival was revived.

EUROPE

Long-Né and Longuès-Brèsses (Malmedy) Giant Joker of Maaseik
Maaseik
in 2013 Venetian Mask
Mask
2016

Belgium

Many parts of Belgium
Belgium
celebrate Carnival, typically with costume parades, partying and fireworks. These areas include Aalst , Binche
Binche
, Eupen
Eupen
, Halle , Heist , Kelmis
Kelmis
, Maaseik
Maaseik
, Malmedy
Malmedy
, and Stavelot
Stavelot
.

The Carnival
Carnival
of Binche
Binche
dates at least to the 14th century. Parades are held over the three days before Lent; the most important participants are the Gilles
Gilles
, who wear traditional costumes on Shrove Tuesday and throw blood oranges to the crowd. In 2003, the Carnival of Binche
Binche
was recognised as one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity . The Carnival of Aalst , celebrated during the three days preceding Ash Wednesday, received the same recognition in 2010.

The Carnival
Carnival
of Malmedy
Malmedy
is locally called Cwarmê. Even if Malmedy
Malmedy
is located in the east Belgium, near the German-speaking area, the Cwarmê is a pure Walloon and Latin
Latin
carnival. The celebration takes place during the four days before Shrove Tuesday. The Cwarmê Sunday is the most important and insteresting to see. All the old traditional costumes parade in the street. The Cwarmê is a "street carnival" and is not only a parade. People who are disguised pass through the crowd and perform a part of the traditional costume they wear. The famous traditional costumes at the Cwarmê of Malmedy
Malmedy
are the Haguète, the Longuès-Brèsses, and the Long-Né .

Some Belgian cities hold Carnivals during Lent. One of the best-known is Stavelot
Stavelot
, where the Carnival
Carnival
de la Laetare takes place on Laetare Sunday , the fourth Sunday of Lent. The participants include the Blancs-Moussis, who dress in white, carry long red noses and parade through town attacking bystanders with confetti and dried pig bladders . The town of Halle also celebrates on Laetare Sunday. Belgium's oldest parade is the Carnival
Carnival
Parade
Parade
of Maaseik
Maaseik
, also held on Laetare Sunday, which originated in 1865.

Bosnia And Herzegovina

In Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
, the Croat -majority city of Ljubuški holds a traditional Carnival
Carnival
(Bosnian : Karneval). Ljubuški is a member of the Federation of European Carnival Cities (FECC).

Croatia

The most famous Croatian Carnival
Carnival
(Croatian: karneval, also called maškare or fašnik) is the Rijeka Carnival
Rijeka Carnival
, during which the mayor of Rijeka
Rijeka
hands over the keys to the city to the Carnival
Carnival
master (meštar od karnevala). The festival includes several events, culminating on the final Sunday in a masked procession. (A similar procession for children takes place on the previous weekend.) Main square in Rijeka
Rijeka
during Carnival
Carnival

Many towns in Croatia's Kvarner region (and in other parts of the country) observe the Carnival
Carnival
period, incorporating local traditions and celebrating local culture. Some of the towns and places are Grobnik, Permani, Kastav and many others places near Rijeka. Just before the end of Carnival, every Kvarner town burns a man-like doll called a "Pust", who is blamed for all the strife of the previous year. The Zvončari , or bell-ringers push away winter and all the bad things in the past year and calling spring, they wear bells and large head regalia representing their areas of origin (for example, those from Halubje wear regalia in the shape of animal heads). The traditional Carnival
Carnival
food is fritule , a pastry. This festival can also be called Poklade. "Coprnice" (Witches) from Međimurje County , Northern Croatia
Croatia

Masks are worn to many of the festivities, including concerts and parties. Children and teachers are commonly allowed to wear masks to school for a day, and also wear masks at school dances or while trick-or-treating. Carnivals also take place in summer. One of the most famous is the Senj Summer Carnival
Carnival
– first celebrated in 1968. The towns of Cres
Cres
, Pag, Novi Vinodolski, and Fužine also organise Summer Carnivals.

Cyprus

Carnival
Carnival
has been celebrated in Cyprus
Cyprus
for centuries. The tradition was likely established under Venetian rule around the 16th century. It may have been influenced by Greek traditions, such as festivities for deities such as Dionysus
Dionysus
. The celebration originally involved dressing in costumes and holding masked balls or visiting friends. In the twentieth century, it became an organized event held during the 10 days preceding Lent (according to the Greek Orthodox calendar). The festival is celebrated almost exclusively in the city of Limassol
Limassol
.

Three main parades take place during Carnival. The first is held on the first day, during which the " Carnival
Carnival
King" (either a person in costume or an effigy ) rides through the city on his carriage. The second is held on the first Sunday of the festival, and the participants are mainly children. The third and largest takes place on the last day of Carnival
Carnival
and involves hundreds of people walking in costume along the town's longest avenue. The latter two parades are open to anyone who wishes to participate.

Czech Republic

See also: Slavic carnival Masopust masks in Czech Republic, 2013

In the Czech Republic
Czech Republic
, the Masopust Festival takes place from Epiphany (Den tří králů) through Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
(Popeleční středa). The word masopust translates literally from old Czech to mean "meat fast", and the festival often includes a pork feast. The tradition is most common in Moravia
Moravia
but also occurs in Bohemia
Bohemia
. While practices vary, masks and costumes are present everywhere.

Denmark
Denmark
And Norway

Main article: Fastelavn

Carnival
Carnival
in Denmark
Denmark
is called Fastelavn, and is held on the Sunday or Monday before Ash Wednesday. The holiday is sometimes described as a Nordic Halloween
Halloween
, with children dressing in costume and gathering treats for the Fastelavn feast. One popular custom is the fastelavnsris, a switch that children use to flog their parents to wake them up on Fastelavns Sunday.

In Norway
Norway
, students having seen celebrations in Paris introduced Carnival
Carnival
processions, masked balls, and Carnival
Carnival
balls to Christiana in the 1840s and 1850s. From 1863, the artist federation Kunstnerforeningen held annual Carnival
Carnival
balls in the old Freemasons lodge, which inspired Johan Svendsen 's compositions Norsk Kunstnerkarneval and Karneval in Paris. The following year, Svendsen's Festpolonaise was written for the opening procession. Edvard Grieg attended and wrote "Aus dem Karneval" (Folkelivsbilleder Op. 19). Since 1988, the student organization Tårnseilerne has produced annual masquerade balls in Oslo, with masks, costumes, and processions after attending an opera performance. The Carnival
Carnival
season also includes Fastelavens søndag (with cream buns) and fastelavensris with decorated branches.

England

Main article: Shrove Tuesday

In England
England
, the season immediately before Lent was called Shrovetide . A time for confessing sins ("shriving"), it had fewer festivities than the Continental Carnivals. Today, Shrove Tuesday is celebrated as Pancake Day , but little else of the Lent-related Shrovetide
Shrovetide
survived the 16th-century English Reformation . Possibly the only Shrovetide Carnival
Carnival
in the United Kingdom is celebrated in Cowes
Cowes
and East Cowes on the Isle of Wight
Isle of Wight
.

France

Some major Carnivals of mainland France
France
are the Nice Carnival
Nice Carnival
, the Dunkirk
Dunkirk
Carnival
Carnival
and the Limoux Carnival. The Nice Carnival
Nice Carnival
was held as far back as 1294, and annually attracts over a million visitors during the two weeks preceding Lent.

Since 1604, a characteristic masked Carnival
Carnival
is celebrated in Limoux .

The Dunkirk
Dunkirk
Carnival
Carnival
is among the greatest and most exuberant carnivals celebrated in Europe. Its traditions date back to the 17th century and are based on the vischerbende as fishermen went from one café to another accompanied by their relatives and friends just before departing to Icelandic fishing grounds.

In the French West Indies , it occurs between the Sunday of Epiphany and Ash Wednesday; this dates back to the arrival of French colonists in the islands.

Germany, Switzerland, And Austria

Main articles: Karneval in Germany
Germany
and Austria
Austria
and Fastnacht or Fasnacht in Germany, Switzerland, Alsace
Alsace
and Austria
Austria

Germany

The Karneval, Fasching, or Fastnacht season in the German-speaking world officially begins on 11 November of any given year at 11:11 AM and ends just before midnight on Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
the following year after the Monday's Rosenmontag Parade. Carnival
Carnival
float in the Rosenmontag parade of the Cologne
Cologne
Carnival
Carnival
, Germany
Germany

The earliest written record of Carnival
Carnival
in Germany
Germany
was in 1296 in Speyer
Speyer
. The first worldwide Carnival
Carnival
parade took place in Cologne
Cologne
in 1823. Music group on Rosenmontag parade of the Cologne
Cologne
Carnival
Carnival
, Germany
Germany

The most active Carnival
Carnival
week begins on the Thursday before Ash Wednesday, with parades during the weekend, and finishes the night before Ash Wednesday, with the main festivities occurring around Rosenmontag (Rose Monday). This time is also called the "Fifth Season". Shrove Tuesday, called Fastnacht or Veilchendienstag, is celebrated in some cities.

Parties feature self-made and more fanciful costumes and occasional masks. The parties become more exuberant as the weeks progress and peak after New Year, in January and February. The final Tuesday features all-night parties, dancing, hugging, and smooching. Some parties are for all, some for women only and some for children. Kreppel , or donuts, are the traditional Fasching
Fasching
food and are baked or fried.

In Germany, the Rheinische Fasching
Fasching
and the Schwäbische Fastnacht are distinct.

"Rheinische" Carnival
Carnival
(Fasching)

The "Rheinische" Carnival
Carnival
is held in the west of Germany, mainly in the states of North Rhine-Westphalia
North Rhine-Westphalia
and Rhineland-Palatinate , but also in Hesse
Hesse
(including Upper Hesse
Hesse
), Bavaria
Bavaria
, and other states. Some cities are more famous for celebrations such as parades and costume balls. The Cologne
Cologne
Carnival
Carnival
, as well as those in Mainz
Mainz
and Düsseldorf
Düsseldorf
, are the largest and most famous. Other cities have their own, often less well-known celebrations, parades, and parties, such as Worms am Rhein , Speyer
Speyer
, Kaiserslautern , Frankfurt
Frankfurt
, Darmstadt
Darmstadt
, Mannheim
Mannheim
, Ludwigshafen
Ludwigshafen
, Stuttgart
Stuttgart
, Augsburg
Augsburg
, Munich
Munich
, and Nuremberg
Nuremberg
. On Carnival
Carnival
Thursday (called "Old Women Day" or "The Women's Day" in commemoration of an 1824 revolt by washer-women), women storm city halls, cut men's ties, and are allowed to kiss any passing man. Reitenderle, der Grundholde, Hudelmale, Schnarragagges; popular Fasnet characters from Kisslegg im Allgäu, Swabia

The Fasching
Fasching
parades and floats make fun of individual politicians and other public figures. Many speeches do the same.

"Swabian-Alemannic" Carnival
Carnival
(Schwäbische Fastnacht)

The "Swabian-Alemannic" Carnival, known as Schwäbische Fastnacht, takes place in Baden
Baden
, Swabia , the Allgäu , Alsace
Alsace
, and Vorarlberg (western Austria
Austria
). During the pagan era, it represented the time of year when the reign of the grim winter spirits is over, and these spirits are hunted and expelled. It then adapted to Catholicism. The first official record of Karneval, Fasching
Fasching
or Fastnacht in Germany dates to 1296.

Swiss Fasnacht

From the Monstercorso on Güdisdienstag\'s evening in Lucerne (2009)

In Switzerland
Switzerland
, Fasnacht takes place in the Catholic
Catholic
cantons of Switzerland, e.g. in Lucerne
Lucerne
(Lozärner Fasnacht), but also in Protestant
Protestant
Basel . However, the Basler Fasnacht begins on the Monday after Ash Wednesday. Both began in the Late Middle Ages
Middle Ages
. Smaller Fasnacht festivities take place across German Switzerland, e.g. in Bern and Olten
Olten
, or in the eastern part ( Zurich
Zurich
, St. Gallen
St. Gallen
, Appenzell
Appenzell
).

Greece

The float of the King Carnival
Carnival
parading in Patras
Patras
, Greece
Greece

In Greece
Greece
, Carnival
Carnival
is also known as the Apokriés (Greek: Αποκριές, "saying goodbye to meat"), or the season of the "Opening of the Triodion ", so named after the liturgical book used by the church from then until Holy Week . One of the season's high points is Tsiknopempti , when celebrants enjoy roast beef dinners; the ritual is repeated the following Sunday. The following week, the last before Lent, is called Tyrinē (Greek: Τυρινή, "cheese ") because meat is forbidden, although dairy products are not. Lent begins on "Clean Monday ", the day after "Cheese Sunday". Throughout the Carnival season, people disguise themselves as maskarádes ("masqueraders") and engage in pranks and revelry.

Patras
Patras
holds the largest annual Carnival
Carnival
in Greece; the famous Patras Carnival
Carnival
is a three-day spectacle replete with concerts, balles masqués , parading troupes, a treasure hunt , and many events for children. The grand parade of masked troupes and floats is held at noon on Tyrine Sunday, and culminates in the ceremonial burning of the effigy of King Carnival
Carnival
at the Patras
Patras
harbour.

Other regions host festivities of smaller extent, focused on the reenactment of traditional carnevalic customs, such as Tyrnavos ( Thessaly
Thessaly
), Kozani ( Western Macedonia ), Rethymno
Rethymno
( Crete
Crete
), and in Xanthi ( Eastern Macedonia and Thrace ). Tyrnavos holds an annual Phallus
Phallus
festival, a traditional "phallkloric" event in which giant, gaudily painted effigies of phalluses made of papier-mâché are paraded, and which women are asked to touch or kiss. Their reward for so doing is a shot of the famous local tsipouro alcohol spirit.

Every year, from 1 to 8 January, mostly in regions of Western Macedonia, Carnival
Carnival
festivals erupt. The best known is the Kastorian Carnival
Carnival
or "Ragoutsaria" (Gr. "Ραγκουτσάρια") . It takes place from 6 to 8 January with mass participation serenaded by brass bands, pipises, and Macedonian and grand casa drums. It is an ancient celebration of nature's rebirth (festivals for Dionysus
Dionysus
(Dionysia) and Kronos (Saturnalia)), which ends the third day in a dance in the medieval square Ntoltso where the bands play at the same time.

Hungary

The Busójárás
Busójárás
in Hungary
Hungary

In Mohács , Hungary
Hungary
, the Busójárás
Busójárás
is a celebration held at the end of the Carnival
Carnival
season. It involves locals dressing in woolly costumes, with scary masks and noise-makers. They perform a burial ritual to symbolise the end of winter and spike doughnuts on weapons to symbolise the defeat of the Ottomans
Ottomans
.

Italy

Main article: Carnival in Italy
Carnival in Italy
This Venetian tradition is most famous for its distinctive masks . The Battle of the Oranges at the carnival of Ivrea
Ivrea

The most famous Carnivals of Italy are held in Venice
Venice
, Viareggio
Viareggio
, and Ivrea
Ivrea
.

The Carnival
Carnival
in Venice
Venice
was first recorded in 1268. Its subversive nature is reflected in Italy's many laws over the centuries attempting to restrict celebrations and the wearing of masks . Carnival celebrations in Venice
Venice
were halted after the city fell under Austrian control in 1798, but were revived in the late 20th century.

The month-long Carnival
Carnival
of Viareggio
Viareggio
is characterized mainly by its parade of floats and masks caricaturing popular figures. In 2001, the town built a new " Carnival
Carnival
citadel" dedicated to Carnival
Carnival
preparations and entertainment.

The Carnival
Carnival
of Ivrea
Ivrea
is famous for its " Battle of the Oranges " fought with fruit between the people on foot and the troops of the tyrant on carts, to remember the wars of the Middle Ages.

In the most part of the Archdiocese of Milan
Milan
, the Carnival
Carnival
lasts four more days, ending on the Saturday after Ash Wednesday, because of the Ambrosian Rite
Ambrosian Rite
.

Lithuania

Main article: Užgavėnės

Užgavėnės is a Lithuanian festival that takes place on Ash Wednesday. Its name in English means "the time before Lent". The celebration corresponds to Carnival
Carnival
holiday traditions.

Užgavėnės begins on the night before Ash Wednesday, when an effigy of winter (usually named Morė) is burnt. A major element symbolizes the defeat of winter in the Northern Hemisphere. It is a staged battle between Lašininis ("porky") personifying winter and Kanapinis ("hempen man") personifying spring. Devils, witches, goats, the grim reaper , and other joyful and frightening characters appear in costumes during the celebrations.

Eating pancakes is an important part of the celebration.

Luxembourg

In Luxembourg
Luxembourg
, the pre-Lenten holiday season is known as Fuesend. Throughout the Grand-Duchy, parades and parties are held.

Pétange is the home of the Grand-Duchy's largest pre-Lenten Karneval celebration. Annually hosting a cavalcade with roughly 1,200 participants and thousand of celebrants, the official name is Karneval Gemeng Péiteng or "Kagepe" (the initials in Luxembourgish are pronounced "Ka", "Ge" and "Pe").

The town of Remich holds a three-day-long celebration, notable for two special events in addition to its parades. The first is the Stréimännchen, which is the burning of a male effigy from the Remich Bridge that crosses the Moselle River
Moselle River
separating the Grand Duchy from Germany
Germany
. The Stréimännchen symbolizes the burning away of winter. The other special event at the Remich Fuesend celebrations is the Buergbrennen or bonfire that closes the celebration.

Like Remich, the town of Esch-sur-Alzette holds a three-day celebration. Other major Fuesend parades in Luxembourg
Luxembourg
are held in the towns of Diekirch
Diekirch
and Differdange .

Malta

Carnival
Carnival
procession in Valletta
Valletta
on Malta
Malta
Carnival
Carnival
in Valletta, Malta
Malta
Main article: Maltese Carnival

Carnival
Carnival
in Malta
Malta
(Maltese: il-Karnival ta' Malta) was introduced to the islands by Grand Master Piero de Ponte
Piero de Ponte
in 1535. It is held during the week leading up to Ash Wednesday, and typically includes masked balls, fancy dresses, and grotesque mask competitions, lavish late-night parties, a colourful, ticker-tape parade of allegorical floats presided over by King Carnival
Carnival
(Maltese: ir-Re tal-Karnival), marching bands, and costumed revellers.

The largest celebration takes place in and around the capital city of Valletta
Valletta
and Floriana
Floriana
; several more "spontaneous" Carnivals take place in more remote areas. The Nadur Carnival is notable for its darker themes. In 2005, the Nadur Carnival hosted the largest-ever gathering of international Carnival
Carnival
organizers for the FECC 's global summit.

Traditional dances include the parata, a lighthearted re-enactment of the 1565 victory of the Knights Hospitaller
Knights Hospitaller
over the Turks , and an 18th-century court dance known as il-Maltija. Carnival
Carnival
food includes perlini (multi-coloured, sugar-coated almonds) and the prinjolata, which is a towering assembly of sponge cake , biscuits, almonds, and citrus fruits, topped with cream and pine nuts.

Netherlands

Main article: Carnival in the Netherlands The Fight Between Carnival
Carnival
and Lent , Pieter Bruegel , 1559

Carnival in the Netherlands is called Carnaval, Vastenavond ("Eve of Lent") or, in Limburgish , Vastelaovend(j), and is mostly celebrated in traditionally Catholic
Catholic
regions, particularly in the southern provinces of North Brabant
North Brabant
and Limburg . While Dutch Carnaval is officially celebrated on the Sunday through Tuesday preceding Ash Wednesday, since the 1970s the feast has gradually started earlier and generally includes now the preceding weekend. Although traditions vary from town to town, Dutch carnaval usually includes a parade, a "Prince Carnival" plus cortège ("Council of 11", sometimes with a Jester
Jester
or Adjutant), sometimes also the handing over by the mayor of the symbolic keys of the town to Prince Carnival, the burning or burial of a symbolic figure, a peasant wedding (boerenbruiloft), and eating herring (haring happen) on Ash Wednesday.

Two main variants can be distinguished: the Rhineland
Rhineland
carnaval, found in the province of Limburg, and the Bourgondische carnaval, found mainly in North Brabant
North Brabant
. Maastricht
Maastricht
, Limburg's capital, holds a street carnaval that features elaborate costumes.

The first known documentation dates from the late 8th century ( Indiculus superstitionum et paganiarum ), but Carnaval was already mentioned during the First Council of Nicaea
First Council of Nicaea
in 325 and by Caesarius of Arles (470-542) around 500 CE. In the Netherlands itself, the first documentation is found in 1383 in \ 's-Hertogenbosch . The oldest-known images of Dutch Carnaval festivities date from 1485, also in 's-Hertogenbosch.

Normal daily life comes to a stop for about a week in the southern part of the Netherlands during the carnival, with roads temporary blocked and many local businesses closed for the week as a result of employees who are en masse taking the days off during and the day after the carnival.

Poland

See also: Slavic carnival

The Polish Carnival
Carnival
season includes Fat Thursday (Polish: Tłusty Czwartek), when pączki (doughnuts) are eaten, and Śledzik (Shrove Tuesday ) or Herring
Herring
Day. The Tuesday before the start of Lent is also often called Ostatki (literally "leftovers"), meaning the last day to party before the Lenten season.

The traditional way to celebrate Carnival
Carnival
is the kulig , a horse-drawn sleigh ride through the snow-covered countryside. In modern times, Carnival
Carnival
is increasingly seen as an excuse for intensive partying and has become more commercialized, with stores offering Carnival-season sales.

Portugal

Sesimbra Carnival, Portugal
Portugal

Carnival
Carnival
in Portugal
Portugal
is celebrated throughout the country, most famously in Ovar , Sesimbra , Madeira
Madeira
, Loulé , Nazaré , and Torres Vedras . The Carnivals in Podence and Lazarim incorporate pagan traditions such as the careto , while the Torres Vedras celebration is probably the most typical.

Although Portugal
Portugal
introduced Christianity and the customs related to Catholic
Catholic
practice to Brazil, the country has begun to adopt some aspects of Brazilian-style Carnival
Carnival
celebrations, in particular those of Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro
with sumptuous parades, samba and other musical elements.

Lazarim

Carnival
Carnival
at Lazarim

In Lazarim , a civil parish in the municipality of Lamego , celebrations follow the pagan tradition of Roman Saturnalias . It celebrates by burning colorful effigies and dressing in home-made costumes. Locally made wooden masks are worn. The masks are effigies of men and women with horns, but both roles are performed by men. They are distinguished by their clothes, which caricature attributes of both men and women.

The Lazarim Carnival
Carnival
cycle encompasses two periods, the first starting on the fifth Sunday before Fat Sunday. Masked figures and people wearing large sculpted heads walk through the town. The locals feast on meats, above all pork . The second cycle, held on Sundays preceding Ash Wednesday, incorporates the tradition of the Compadres and Comadres, with men and women displaying light-hearted authority over the other.

Over the five weeks, men prepare large masked heads and women raise funds to pay for two mannequins that will be sacrificed in a public bonfire. This is a key event and is unique to Portugal. During the bonfire, a girl reads the Compadre's will and a boy reads the Comadre's will. The executors of the will are named, a donkey is symbolically distributed to both female and male "heirs", and then there is the final reckoning in which the Entrudo, or Carnival
Carnival
doll, is burned.

Azores

On the islands of the Azores
Azores
, local clubs and Carnival
Carnival
groups create colorful and creative costumes that jab at politics or culture.

On São Miguel Island , Carnival
Carnival
features street vendors selling fried dough, called a malassada . The festival on the biggest island starts off with a black tie grand ball, followed by Latin
Latin
music at Coliseu Micaelense. A children's parade fills the streets of Ponta Delgada with children from each school district in costume. A massive parade continues past midnight, ending in fireworks .

The event includes theatre performances and dances. In the "Danças de Entrudo", hundreds of people follow the dancers around the island. Throughout the show the dancers act out scenes from daily life. The "Dances de Carnival" are allegorical and comedic tales acted out in the streets. The largest is in Angra do Heroísmo , with more than 30 groups performing. More Portuguese-language theatrical performances occur there than anywhere else.

Festivities end on Ash Wednesday, when locals sit down for the "Batatada" or potato feast, in which the main dish is salted cod with potatoes, eggs, mint, bread and wine. Residents then return to the streets for the burning of the " Carnival
Carnival
clown", ending the season.

Madeira

A dancer in the Carnival
Carnival
of Madeira
Madeira
, on the island's capital Funchal
Funchal
Main article: Carnival
Carnival
of Madeira
Madeira

On the island of Madeira
Madeira
, the island's capital, Funchal
Funchal
, wakes up on the Friday before Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
to the sound of brass bands and Carnival
Carnival
parades throughout downtown. Festivities continue with concerts and shows in the Praça do Município for five consecutive days. The main Carnival
Carnival
street parade takes place on Saturday evening, with thousands of samba dancers filling the streets. The traditional street event takes place on Tuesday, featuring daring caricatures.

Arguably, Brazil's Carnival
Carnival
could be traced to the period of the Portuguese Age of Discoveries when their caravels passed regularly through Madeira, a territory that emphatically celebrated Carnival.

Other Regions

In Estarreja , in the Central region of Portugal, the town's first references to Carnival
Carnival
were in the 14th century, with "Flower Battles", richly decorated floats that paraded through the streets. At the beginning of the twentieth century, these festivities ended with the deaths of its main promoters, only to reappear again in the 1960s to become one of many important Carnival
Carnival
festivals in Portugal.

In the Northern region of Podence , children appear from Sunday to Tuesday with tin masks and colorful multilayered costumes made from red, green and yellow wool. In the Central Portugal
Portugal
towns of Nelas and Canas de Senhorim
Canas de Senhorim
, Carnival
Carnival
is an important tourist event. Nelas and Canas de Senhorim
Canas de Senhorim
host four festive parades that offer colorful and creative costumes: Bairro da Igreja and Cimo do Povo in Nelas and do Paço and do Rossio in Canas de Senhorim. Ovar Carnival, Portugal

Carnival
Carnival
in the town of Ovar , near Porto, began in 1952 and is the region's largest festivity, representing a large investment and the most important touristic event to the city. It is known for its creative designs, displayed in the Carnival
Carnival
Parade, which features troupes with themed costumes and music, ranging from the traditional to pop culture. Along with the Carnival
Carnival
Parade, there are five nights of partying, finishing with the famous 'Magical night' where people come from all over the country, mostly with their handmade costumes, only to have fun with the locals.

In Lisbon
Lisbon
, Carnival
Carnival
offers parades, dances and festivities featuring stars from Portugal
Portugal
and Brazil. The Loures Carnival
Carnival
celebrates the country's folk traditions, including the enterro do bacalhau or burial of the cod , which marks the end of Carnival
Carnival
and the festivities.

North of Lisbon
Lisbon
is the famous Torres Vedras Carnival, described as the "most Portuguese in Portugal". The celebration highlight is a parade of creatively decorated streetcars that satirize society and politics.

Other Central Portugal
Portugal
towns, such as Fátima and Leiria , offer colorful, family-friendly celebrations. In these towns, everyone dresses up as if it were Halloween
Halloween
. Children and adults wear masks.

In the Algarve
Algarve
region, several resort towns offer Carnival
Carnival
parades. Besides the themed floats and cars, the festivities include "samba" groups, bands, dances, and music.

Republic Of Macedonia

The most popular Carnivals in Macedonia are in Vevčani and Strumica .

The Vevčani Carnival
Carnival
(Macedonian : Вевчански Kарневал, translated Vevchanski Karneval) has been held for over 1,400 years, and takes place on 13 and 14 January (New Year's Eve and New Year's Day by the old calendar). The village becomes a live theatre where costumed actors improvise on the streets in roles such as the traditional "August the Stupid".

The Strumica
Strumica
Carnival
Carnival
(Macedonian : Струмички Карневал, translated Strumichki Karneval) has been held since at least 1670, when the Turkish author Evlija Chelebija wrote while staying there, "I came into a town located in the foothills of a high hillock and what I saw that night was masked people running house–to–house, with laughter, scream and song." The Carnival
Carnival
took an organized form in 1991; in 1994, Strumica
Strumica
became a member of FECC and in 1998 hosted the XVIII International Congress of Carnival Cities. The Strumica
Strumica
Carnival
Carnival
opens on a Saturday night at a masked ball where the Prince and Princess are chosen; the main Carnival
Carnival
night is on Tuesday, when masked participants (including groups from abroad) compete in various subjects. As of 2000, the Festival of Caricatures and Aphorisms has been held as part of Strumica's Carnival celebrations.

Russia

Main article: Maslenitsa See also: Slavic carnival Boris Kustodiev 's painting of Maslenitsa

Maslenitsa (Масленица, also called "Pancake Week" or "Cheese Week") is a Russian folk holiday that incorporates some pagan traditions. It is celebrated during the last week before Lent. The essential element is bliny , Russian pancakes, popularly taken to symbolize the sun. Round and golden, they are made from the rich foods allowed that week by the Orthodox traditions: butter, eggs, and milk. (In the tradition of Orthodox Lent, the consumption of meat ceases one week before that of milk and eggs.)

Maslenitsa also includes masquerades , snowball fights, sledding, swinging on swings, and sleigh rides. The mascot is a brightly dressed straw effigy of Lady Maslenitsa, formerly known as Kostroma . The celebration culminates on Sunday evening, when Lady Maslenitsa is stripped of her finery and put to the flames of a bonfire .

Slovakia

See also: Slavic carnival

In Slovakia
Slovakia
, the Fašiangy (fašiang, fašangy) takes place from Three Kings Day
Three Kings Day
(Traja králi) until the midnight before Ash Wednesday (Škaredá streda or Popolcová streda). At the midnight marking the end of fašiangy, a symbolic burial ceremony for the contrabass is performed, because music ceases for Lent .

Slovenia

The Slovenian countryside displays a variety of disguised groups and individual characters, among which the most popular and characteristic is the Kurent (plural: Kurenti), a monstrous and demon-like, but fluffy figure. The most significant festival is held in Ptuj
Ptuj
(see: Kurentovanje ). Its special feature are the Kurents themselves, magical creatures from another world, who visit major events throughout the country, trying to banish the winter and announce spring's arrival, fertility, and new life with noise and dancing. The origin of the Kurent is a mystery, and not much is known of the times, beliefs, or purposes connected with its first appearance. The origin of the name itself is obscure.

The Cerknica Carnival
Carnival
is heralded by a figure called "Poganjič" carrying a whip. In the procession, organised by the "Pust society", a monstrous witch named Uršula is driven from the mountain Slivnica , to be burned at the stake on Ash Wednesday. Unique to this region is a group of dormice , driven by the Devil and a huge fire-breathing dragon. Cerkno
Cerkno
and its surrounding area are known for the Laufarji, Carnival
Carnival
figures with artistically carved wooden masks.

The Maškare from Dobrepolje
Dobrepolje
used to represent a triple character: the beautiful, the ugly (among which the most important represented by an old man, an old woman, a hunchback, and a Kurent), and the noble (imitating the urban elite).

The major part of the population, especially the young and children, dress up in ordinary non-ethnic costumes, going to school, work, and organized events, where prizes are given for the best and most original costumes. Costumed children sometimes go from house to house asking for treats.

Spain

The Burial of the Sardine , Francisco Goya, c. 1812

Arguably the most famous Carnivals in Spain are Santa Cruz , Las Palmas , Sitges
Sitges
, Vilanova i la Geltrú , Tarragona
Tarragona
, Águilas , Solsona , Cádiz , Badajoz , Bielsa (an ancestral Carnival celebration), Plan , San Juan de Plan , Laza , Verín
Verín
, Viana, and Xinzo de Limia .

One of the oldest pre-Indo-European carnival in Europe takes place in Ituren and Zubieta in Navarre in late January/early February. The carnival symbolises the eternal struggle between the forces of good and evil; light and darkness, winter and spring.

Andalusia

Main article: Carnival
Carnival
of Cádiz A choir singing in the Carnival
Carnival
of Cádiz

In Cádiz , the costumes worn are often related to recent news, such as the bird flu epidemic in 2006, during which many people were disguised as chickens. The feeling of this Carnival
Carnival
is the sharp criticism, the funny play on words and the imagination in the costumes, more than the glamorous dressings. It is traditional to paint the face with lipstick as a humble substitute of a mask.

The most famous groups are the chirigotas , choirs, and comparsas . The chirigotas are well known witty, satiric popular groups who sing about politics, new times, and household topics, wearing the same costume, which they prepare for the whole year. The Choirs (coros) are wider groups that go on open carts through the streets singing with an orchestra of guitars and lutes. Their signature piece is the "Carnival Tango", alternating comical and serious repertory. The comparsas are the serious counterpart of the chirigota in Cádiz, and the poetic lyrics and the criticism are their main ingredients. They have a more elaborated polyphony that is easily recognizable by the typical countertenor voice.

Canary Islands

See also: Carnival
Carnival
of Las Palmas
Las Palmas
and Carnival
Carnival
of Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival Queen of Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
, 2009

The Santa Cruz Carnival
Carnival
is, with the Carnival
Carnival
of Cadiz, the most important festival for Spanish tourism and Spain's largest Carnival. In 1980, it was declared a Festival Tourist International Interest. Every February, Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
, the capital of the largest of the Canary Islands
Canary Islands
, hosts the event, attracting around a million people.

In 1980, it was declared a Festival Tourist International Interest. In 1987, Cuban singer Celia Cruz
Celia Cruz
with orchestra Billo\'s Caracas Boys performed at the " Carnival
Carnival
Chicharrero", attended by 250,000 people. This was registered in the Guinness Book of World Records
Guinness Book of World Records
as the largest gathering of people in an outdoor plaza to attend a concert, a record she holds today.

The Carnival
Carnival
of Las Palmas
Las Palmas
( Gran Canaria
Gran Canaria
) has a drag queen's gala where a jury chooses a winner.

Catalonia

Vidalot is the last night of revelry before Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
in Vilanova . Water color painting by Brad Erickson.

In Catalonia
Catalonia
, people dress in masks and costume (often in themed groups) and organize a week-long series of parties, pranks, outlandish activities such as bed races, street dramas satirizing public figures, and raucous processions to welcome the arrival of Sa Majestat el Rei Carnestoltes ("His Majesty King Carnival"), known by various titles, including el Rei dels poca-soltes ("King of the Crackpots"), Princep etern de Cornudella ("Eternal Prince of Cuckoldry"), Duc de ximples i corrumputs ("Duke of Fools and the Corrupt"), Marquès de la bona mamella ("Marquis of the lovely breast"), Comte de tots els barruts ("Count of the Insolent"), Baró de les Calaverades ("Baron of Nocturnal Debaucheries"), and Senyor de l'alt Plàtan florit, dels barraquers i gamberrades i artista d'honor dalt del llit ("Lord of the Tall Banana in Bloom, of the Voyeurs and Punks and the Artist of Honor upon the Bed").

The King presides over a period of misrule in which conventional social rules may be broken and reckless behavior is encouraged. Festivities are held in the open air, beginning with a cercavila, a ritual procession throughout the town to call everyone to attend. Rues of masked revelers dance alongside. On Thursday, Dijous Gras (Fat Thursday) is celebrated, also called 'omelette day' (el dia de la truita), on which coques (de llardons, butifarra d'ou, butifarra), and omelettes are eaten. The festivities end on Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
with elaborate funeral rituals marking the death of King Carnival, who is typically burned on a pyre in what is called the "burial of the sardine " (enterrament de la sardina), or, in Vilanova, as l'enterro.

The Carnival
Carnival
of Vilanova i la Geltrú has a documented history from 1790 and is one of the richest in the variety of its acts and rituals. It adopts an ancient style in which satire, the grotesque body (particularly cross-dressing and displays of exaggerated bellies, noses, and phalli) and above all, active participation are valued over glamorous, media-friendly spectacles that Vilanovins mock as "thighs and feathers". It is best known for Les Comparses (held on Sunday), a tumultuous dance in which 12,000 or more dancers organized into rival groups throw 75 tons of hard candies at one other. The women protect their faces with Mantons de Manila (Manila shawls), but eye-patches and slings for broken arms are common the following week. Vilanovins organize an elaborate ritual for the arrival of King Carnival
Carnival
called l'Arrivo that changes every year. It includes a raucous procession of floats and dancers lampooning current events or public figures and a bitingly satiric sermon (el sermo) delivered by the King himself. On Dijous Gras, Vilanovin children are excused from school to participate in the Merengada, a day-long scene of eating and fighting with sticky, sweet meringue . Children become covered in meringue during Dijous Gras.

Adults have a meringue battle at midnight at the historic Plaça de les Cols in the mysterious sortida del Moixo Foguer (the outing of Little-Bird-Bonfire), accompanied by the Xerraire (jabberer) who insults the crowd. In the King's procession, he and his concubines scandalize the town with their sexual behavior. A correfoc (fire run) or Devil's dance (ball de diables ), features dancing youth amid the sparks and explosions of the ritual crew of devils. Other items includes bed races in the streets, the debauched Nit dels Mascarots, karaoke sausage roasts, xatonades, the children's party, Vidalet, the last night of revelry, Vidalot, the talking-dance of the Mismatched Couples (Ball de Malcasats) and the children's King Caramel whose massive belly, long nose and sausage-like hair hint at his insatiable appetites. The Ball de Malcasats (Dance of the Mismatched Couples) is a satiric talking-dance traditional to Carnaval in Vilanova.

For the King's funeral, people dress in elaborate mourning costume, many of them cross-dressing men who carry bouquets of phallic vegetables. In the funeral house, the body of the King is surrounded by an honor guard and weeping concubines, crying over the loss of sexual pleasure brought about by his death. The King's body is carried to the Plaça de la Vila where a satiric eulogy is delivered while the townspeople eat salty grilled sardines with bread and wine, suggesting the symbolic cannibalism of the communion ritual. Finally, amid rockets and explosions, the King's body is burned in a massive pyre. "Ploranyeres" weep for the death of His Majesty and the loss of pleasure. Donkeys of Solsona, hung in the tower bell.

Carnaval de Solsona takes place in Solsona, Lleida . It is one of the longest; free events in the streets and nightly concerts run for more than a week. The Carnival
Carnival
is known for a legend that explains how a donkey was hung at the tower bell − because the animal wanted to eat grass that grew on the top of the tower. To celebrate this legend, locals hang a stuffed donkey at the tower that "pisses" above the excited crowd using a water pump. This event is the most important and takes place on Saturday night. For this reason, the inhabitants are called matarrucs ("donkey killers").

"Comparses" groups organize free activities. These groups of friends create and personalize a uniformed suit to wear during the festivities.

In Sitges
Sitges
, special feasts include xatonades (xató is a traditional local salad of the Penedès coast) served with omelettes. Two important moments are the Rua de la Disbauxa (Debauchery Parade) on Sunday night and the Rua de l'Extermini (Extermination Parade) on Tuesday night. Around 40 floats draw more than 2,500 participants.

Tarragona
Tarragona
has one of the region's most complete ritual sequences. The events start with the building of a huge barrel and ends with its burning with the effigies of the King and Queen. On Saturday, the main parade takes place with masked groups, zoomorphic figures, music, and percussion bands, and groups with fireworks (the devils, the dragon, the ox, the female dragon). Carnival
Carnival
groups stand out for their clothes full of elegance, showing brilliant examples of fabric crafts, at the Saturday and Sunday parades. About 5,000 people are members of the parade groups.

Valencian Community

One of the most important Spanish Carnival
Carnival
Festivals is celebrated in Vinaròs , a small town situated in the northern part of the province of Castellón , Valencian Community .

The Carnival
Carnival
Festival in Vinaròs has been declared of Regional Touristic Interest and this year (2017) this outstanding and ancient show celebrates 35 years of History. The Carnival
Carnival
Festival in Vinaròs became a forbidden celebration during the Spanish Civil War
Spanish Civil War
but after the dictatorship, the party regained importance with the democracy’s arrival.

Every year in February, forty days before the Spanish Cuaresma , thirty-three “comparsas” go singing, dancing and walking down the streets in a great costumes’ parade in Vinaròs. In addition, other many festive, cultural and musical activities of all ages take place, such as an epic battle of confetti and flour, funny karaoke contests or the so-called “ Entierro de la Sardina
Entierro de la Sardina
” (Burial of the Sardine).

Nevertheless, the most important event is the gala performance of the Carnival’s Queen. In this breathtaking show, it is elected the Queen of the Carnival, the major representative of the Carnival
Carnival
in Vinaròs all year round.

NORTH AMERICA

Caribbean

Main article: Caribbean
Caribbean
Carnival
Carnival

Most Caribbean
Caribbean
islands celebrate Carnival. The largest and most well-known is in Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago
. The Dominican Republic
Dominican Republic
, Guyana , Antigua
Antigua
, Aruba
Aruba
, Barbados
Barbados
, Bonaire
Bonaire
, Cayman Islands , Cuba
Cuba
, Curaçao , Dominica
Dominica
, Grenada
Grenada
, Guadeloupe
Guadeloupe
, Haiti
Haiti
, Jamaica
Jamaica
, Saba
Saba
, Sint Eustatius
Sint Eustatius
(Statia), Sint Maarten
Sint Maarten
, Saint Lucia
Saint Lucia
, Saint Kitts
Saint Kitts
, Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands , Saint Vincent , and the Grenadines hold lengthy carnival seasons and large celebrations.

Carnival
Carnival
is an important cultural event in the Dutch Caribbean
Caribbean
. Festivities include "jump-up" parades with beautifully colored costumes, floats, and live bands, as well as beauty contests and other competitions. Celebrations include a middle-of-the-night j\'ouvert (juvé) parade that ends at sunrise with the burning of a straw King Momo , cleansing sins and bad luck. On Statia, he is called Prince Stupid.

Carnival
Carnival
has been celebrated in Cuba
Cuba
since the 18th century. Participants don costumes from the island's cultural and ethnic variety. After Fidel Castro
Fidel Castro
's Communist Revolution , Carnival's religious overtones were suppressed. The events remained, albeit frowned upon by the state. Carnival
Carnival
celebrations have been in decline throughout Cuba
Cuba
since then.

Aruba

Carnival
Carnival
in Aruba
Aruba
means weeks of events that bring colourfully decorated floats, contagiously throbbing music, luxuriously costumed groups of celebrants of all ages, King and Queen elections, electrifying jump-ups and torchlight parades, the Jouvert morning: the Children's Parades, and finally the Grand Parade. Aruba's biggest celebration is a month-long affair consisting of festive "jump-ups" (street parades), spectacular parades, and creative contests. Music and flamboyant costumes play a central role, from the Queen elections to the Grand Parade. Street parades continue in various districts throughout the month, with brass band, steel drum and roadmarch tunes. On the evening before Lent, Carnival
Carnival
ends with the symbolic burning of King Momo.

Antigua

Main article: Antigua
Antigua
Carnival
Carnival

The Antiguan Carnival
Carnival
is held from the end of July to the first Tuesday in August. The most important day is that of the j'ouvert (or juvé), in which brass and steel drum bands perform. Barbuda 's Carnival, held in June, is known as "Caribana". The Antiguan and Barbudan Carnivals replaced the Old Time Christmas
Christmas
Festival in 1957, with hopes of inspiring tourism.

Barbados

Main article: Crop over

Carnival
Carnival
is known as "Crop Over" and is Barbados
Barbados
's biggest festival. Its early beginnings were on the sugar cane plantations during the colonial period. Crop Over began in 1688, and featured singing, dancing, and accompaniment by shak-shak , banjo , triangle , fiddle , guitar, bottles filled with water, and bones. Other traditions included climbing a greased pole, feasting, and drinking competitions. Originally signaling the end of the yearly cane harvest, it evolved into a national festival. In the late 20th century, Crop Over began to closely mirror the Trinidad
Trinidad
Carnival. Beginning in June, Crop Over runs until the first Monday in August when it culminates in the finale, the Grand Kadooment.

Carnival
Carnival
time for many islanders is one big party. Craft markets, food tents/stalls, street parties, and cavalcades fill every week.

A major feature is the calypso competition. Calypso music, originating in Trinidad, uses syncopated rhythm and topical lyrics. It offers a medium in which to satirise local politics, amidst the general bacchanal. Calypso tents, also originating in Trinidad, feature cadres of musicians who perform biting social commentaries, political exposés or rousing exhortations to "wuk dah waistline" and "roll dat bumper". The groups compete for the Calypso Monarch Award, while the air is redolent with the smells of Bajan cooking during the Bridgetown
Bridgetown
Market Street Fair. The Cohobblopot Festival blends dance, drama, and music with the crowning of the King and Queen of costume bands. Every evening the "Pic-o-de-Crop" Show is performed after the King of Calypso is finally crowned. The climax of the festival is Kadooment Day, celebrated with a national holiday, when costume bands fill the streets with pulsating Barbadian rhythms and fireworks.

Belize

San Pedro is one of Belize
Belize
's few cities to observe Carnaval before Lent. Elsewhere, Carnaval (sometimes referred to as Carnival) often occurs in September. The Fiesta de Carnaval is often the most popular celebration, usually held over three days prior to Ash Wednesday, but the festivities often extend to the full week. This festival "always includes music, dancing, costumes and parades."

Comparsas are held throughout the week, consisting of large groups "of dancers dancing and traveling on the streets, followed by a Carrosa (carriage) where the musicians play. The Comparsa is a development of African processions where groups of devotees follow a given saint or deity during a particular religious celebration." One of the most popular comparsas of Fiesta de Carnaval is the male group comparsa, usually composed of notable men from the community who dress up in outlandish costumes or cross-dress and dance to compete for money and prizes. Other popular activities include body painting and flour fighting. "On the last day of Carnival
Carnival
painters flood the street to paint each other. This simply means that a mixture of water paint and water or raw eggs is used to paint people on the streets, the goal being to paint as many people as you can."

Street fights often occur during the festivities - some locals treat this festival as an opportunity to exact revenge on their enemies. Vandalism is common and "businesses constantly have to prepare in covering or repainting their advertisements during Carnival
Carnival
season because of the mischief performed." The tradition continues despite critics who advocate the termination of these festivities.

Dominica

A Dominican Carnival costume band Main article: Chanté mas
Chanté mas

Carnival
Carnival
in Dominica
Dominica
is held in the capital city of Roseau , and takes elements of Carnival
Carnival
that can be seen in the neighbouring French islands of Martinique
Martinique
and Guadeloupe
Guadeloupe
, as well as Trinidad
Trinidad
. Notable events leading up to Carnival
Carnival
include the Opening of Carnival celebrations, the Calypso Monarch music competition, the Queen of Carnival
Carnival
Beauty Pageant, and bouyon music bands. Celebrations last for the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday.

Dominican Republic

Main article: Dominican Carnival

Dominican Carnival is celebrated in most cities and towns in the main streets during February. Among its main characteristics are its flashy costumes and loud music. The one held in La Vega , which is one of the biggest in the country, and the national parade in Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo
were where the first Carnival
Carnival
of the Americas was held.

Carvnival masks are elaborate and colorful. The costumes used on the parades are satires of the Devil and are called "Diablos Cojuelos". They dance, and run to the rhythm of merengue music mixed with techno, hip-hop, and reggaeton . Additional allegorical characters represent Dominican traditions such as "Roba la Gallina" and "Califé".

One of the most international parades is in San Pedro de Macorís . It exhibits the "Guloyas" parade of costumed groups dancing in the streets. Revelers flee from the "Diablos Cojuelos" who try to hit them with "Vejigas".

The timing of the festivals has grown apart from its original religious synchronization with the period of Lent. Due to National Independence Day on 27 February and the birthday of Juan Pablo Duarte , its founding father, on 26 January, the Carnival
Carnival
celebrations fill February regardless of the Lenten calendar.

Haiti

Main article: Haitian Carnival
Haitian Carnival

Carnival
Carnival
in Haiti
Haiti
started in 1804 in the capital Port-au-Prince after the declaration of independence . The Port-au-Prince Carnival
Carnival
is one of the largest in North America. It is known as Kanaval in the Creole language . It starts in January, known as "Pre-Kanaval", while the main carnival activities begin in February. In July 2012, Haiti
Haiti
had another carnival called Kanaval de Fleur. Beautiful costumes, floats, Rara
Rara
parades, masks, foods, and popular rasin music (such as Boukman Eksperyans , Foula Vodoule, Tokay, Boukan Ginen, and Eritaj) and kompa bands (such as T-Vice, Djakout No. 1, Sweet Micky , Kreyòl La, D.P. Express, Mizik Mizik, Ram, T-Micky, Carimi, Djakout Mizik, and Scorpio Fever) play for dancers in the streets of the plaza of Champ-de-Mars . An annual song competition takes place.

Other places in Haiti
Haiti
celebrate carnival, including Jacmel and Aux Cayes . In 2013, Kanaval was celebrated in Okap ( Cap-Haïtien ).

Carnival
Carnival
finishes on Ash Wednesday, followed by rara , another parading musical tradition known mainly in Haiti
Haiti
and in the Dominican Republic. This festival emphasises religion. Songs are composed each year, and bands play bamboo tubes (vaksin) and homemade horns (konèt). Rara
Rara
is also performed in Prospect and Central Park
Central Park
in summertime New York.

Jamaica

Bacchanal, Jamaica
Jamaica
's carnival, is typically held around Easter. It is a cultural import from Trinidad
Trinidad
white-space:nowrap;"> Preliminaries are followed up with a Beach Jouvert, Bacchanal Jouvert and end with a Road March. The costumes worn by the bands are vibrant and colorful, decorated with jewels and feathers. Both the masqueraders and spectators enjoy dancing parade to soca , reggae , and dancehall music.

Trinidad
Trinidad
And Tobago

Masqueraders chipping on Carnival
Carnival
Tuesday in Port of Spain during Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago
Carnival
Carnival
Main article: Trinidad
Trinidad
and Tobago Carnival
Carnival

In Trinidad
Trinidad
">

The annual Carnival
Carnival
steel pan competition known as the National Panorama competition holds the finals on the Saturday before the main event. Pan players compete in categories such as "Conventional Steel Band" or "Single Pan Band" by performing renditions of the year's calypsos.

"Dimanche Gras" takes place on the Sunday night before Ash Wednesday. Here the Calypso Monarch is chosen (after competition) and prize money and a vehicle awarded. The King and Queen of the bands are crowned, where each band parades costumes for two days and submits a king and queen, from which an overall winner is chosen. These usually involve huge, complex, beautiful well-crafted costumes, that includes 'wire-bending'.

J'ouvert, or "Dirty Mas", takes place before dawn on the Monday (known as Carnival
Carnival
Monday) before Ash Wednesday. It means "opening of the day". Revelers dress in costumes embodying puns on current affairs, especially political and social events. "Clean Mud" (clay mud), oil paint and body paint are familiar during J'ouvert. A common character is "Jab-jabs" (devils, blue, black, or red) complete with pitchfork, pointed horns and tails. A King and Queen of J'ouvert are chosen, based on their witty political/social messages. The Carnival
Carnival
King costume for a particular band

Carnival
Carnival
Monday involves the parade of the mas bands. Revelers wear only parts of their costumes, more for fun than display or competition. Monday Night Mas is popular in most towns and especially the capital, where smaller bands compete. There is also the "Bomb Competition", a smaller-scaled judging of steel bands.

Carnival
Carnival
Tuesday hosts the main events. Full costume is worn, complete with make-up and body paint/adornment. Usually "Mas Boots" that complement the costumes are worn. Each band has their costume presentation based on a particular theme, and contains various sections (some consisting of thousands of revelers) that reflect these themes. The street parade and band costume competition take place. The mas bands eventually converge on the Queen's Park Savannah to pass on "The Stage" for judging. The singer of the most played song is crowned Road March King or Queen, earning prize money and usually a vehicle.

This parading and revelry goes on until Tuesday midnight. Ash Wednesday itself, while not an official holiday, sends flocks to local beaches. The most popular are Maracas Beach
Maracas Beach
and Manzanilla Beach , where huge beach parties take place on Ash Wednesday.

Guatemala

The most famous Carnival
Carnival
celebration in Guatemala
Guatemala
is in Mazatenango . During February, Mazatenango is famous for its eight-day Carnival Feast. Days of food, music, parades, and games fill the streets of the department of Suchitepéquez . As one Guatemalan website states, "To mention the Carnival
Carnival
of Mazatenango is to bring to mind moments of a happy and cordial party. In the eight days of this celebration's duration, the local residents have kept alive the traditions of the Department."

Honduras

In La Ceiba
La Ceiba
in Honduras
Honduras
, Carnival
Carnival
is held on the fourth Saturday of every May to commemorate San Isidro . It is the largest Carnival celebration in Central America
Central America
.

Nicaragua

On the Caribbean
Caribbean
coast of Bluefields , Nicaragua
Nicaragua
, Carnival
Carnival
is better known as "Palo de Mayo" (or Mayo Ya!) and is celebrated every day of May.

In Managua
Managua
, it is celebrated for two days. There it is named Alegria por la vida ("Joy for Life") and features a different theme each year. Another festival in Managua
Managua
is called " Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo
de Guzman" and lasts ten days.

Mexico

Main article: Carnival in Mexico

In Mexico
Mexico
, Carnival
Carnival
is celebrated in about 225 cities and towns. The largest is in Mazatlán and the city of Veracruz , with others in Baja California and Yucatán . The larger city Carnivals employ costumes, elected queens, and parades with floats, but Carnival
Carnival
celebrations in smaller and rural areas vary widely depending on the level of European influence during Mexico's colonial period. The largest of these is in Huejotzingo
Huejotzingo
, Puebla
Puebla
, where most townspeople take part in mock combat with rifles shooting blanks, roughly based on the Battle of Puebla
Puebla
. Other important states with local traditions include Morelos , Oaxaca , Tlaxcala
Tlaxcala
, and Chiapas
Chiapas
.

Panama

Traditionally beginning on Friday and ending on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, "los Carnavales", as Panamanians refer to the days of Carnival, are celebrated across the country. Carnival
Carnival
Week is especially popular because of the opulent Las Tablas Carnival
Carnival
as well as the Carnival
Carnival
celebrations in Panama
Panama
City and almost all of the Azuero Peninsula . The Panamanian Carnival
Carnival
is also popular because of the concerts in the most visited areas.

Bahamas

In an effort to capitalize on Carnival's popularity, the Bahamas announced the first Bahamas
Bahamas
Junkanoo
Junkanoo
Carnival
Carnival
to commence in May 2015.

Canada

Caribana , held in Toronto
Toronto
on the first weekend of August, has its origins in Caribbean
Caribbean
Carnival
Carnival
traditions. Due to the more comfortable weather, Caribana is held in the summer. Attendance at the parade typically exceeds one million.

The Quebec Winter Carnival
Quebec Winter Carnival
is the biggest winter-themed Carnival
Carnival
in the world. It depends on snowfall and very cold weather, to keep snowy ski trails in good condition and ice sculptures frozen. The carnival is held during the last days of January and first days of February.

In the Ottawa
Ottawa
- Gatineau
Gatineau
region, Winterlude takes place during February.

United States

Main articles: Mardi Gras in the United States ; New Orleans
New Orleans
Mardi Gras ; and Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama
Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama
Revelers on Frenchmen Street , New Orleans, 2006

Carnival
Carnival
celebrations, usually referred to as Mardi Gras ("Fat Tuesday" in French), were first celebrated in the Gulf Coast area, but now occur in many states. Customs originated in the onetime French colonial capitals of Mobile (now in Alabama
Alabama
), New Orleans
New Orleans
(Louisiana ), and Biloxi ( Mississippi
Mississippi
), all of which have celebrated for many years with street parades and masked balls. Other major American cities with celebrations include Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
; St. Louis ; San Francisco ; San Diego
San Diego
; Galveston, Texas ; and Miami
Miami
, Pensacola , Tampa , and Orlando in Florida
Florida
.

The most widely known, most elaborate and most popular US events are in New Orleans, while other southern Louisiana
Louisiana
cities such as Lake Charles , Baton Rouge , Lafayette , Mamou , Houma , and Thibodaux , all of which were under French control at one time or another, also hold Carnival
Carnival
celebrations.

Carnival
Carnival
is celebrated in New York City in Brooklyn
Brooklyn
. As in the UK, the timing of Carnival
Carnival
split from the Christian calendar and is celebrated on Labor Day Monday, in September. It is called the Labor Day Carnival
Carnival
, West Indian Day Parade, or West Indian Day Carnival, and was founded by immigrants from Trinidad. That country has one of the largest Caribbean
Caribbean
Carnivals. In the mid twentieth century, West Indians moved the event from the beginning of Lent to the Labor Day weekend. Carnival
Carnival
is one of the largest parades and street festivals in New York, with over one million attending. The parade, which consists of steel bands, floats, elaborate Carnival
Carnival
costumes, and sound trucks, proceeds along Brooklyn's Eastern Parkway in the Crown Heights neighborhood.

Starting in 2013, the Slovenian-American community located in the St. Clair-Superior neighborhood of Cleveland
Cleveland
began hosting a local version of Kurentovanje , the Carnival
Carnival
event held in the city of Ptuj
Ptuj
, Slovenia
Slovenia
. The event is conducted on the Saturday prior to Ash Wednesday.

Mardi Gras celebrations are spreading to other regions, such as the Mississippi
Mississippi
Valley region of St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis, Missouri
; Orlando, Florida
Orlando, Florida
in Universal Studios and in the Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego.

Puerto Rico

Main article: Carnaval de Ponce
Carnaval de Ponce

Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
's most popular festivals are the Carnaval de Loiza and Carnaval de Ponce
Carnaval de Ponce
. The Carnaval de Ponce
Carnaval de Ponce
(officially "Carnaval Ponceño") is celebrated annually celebration in Ponce . The celebration lasts one week and ends on the day before Ash Wednesday. It is one of the oldest carnivals of the Western Hemisphere, dating to 1858. Some authorities trace the Ponce Carnaval to the eighteenth century.

SOUTH AMERICA

Argentina

In Argentina
Argentina
, the most representative Carnival
Carnival
performed is the so-called Murga
Murga
, although other famous Carnivals, more like Brazil's, are held in Argentine Mesopotamia and the North-East. Gualeguaychú in the east of Entre Ríos Province is the most important Carnival
Carnival
city and has one of the largest parades. It adopts a musical background similar to Brazilian or Uruguayan Carnival. Corrientes
Corrientes
is another city with a Carnival
Carnival
tradition. Chamamé is a popular musical style. In all major cities and many towns throughout the country, Carnival
Carnival
is celebrated.

As Carnival
Carnival
coincides with summer in the Southern Hemisphere, in many parts of Argentina
Argentina
children play with water. The 19th century tradition of filling empty egg shells with water has evolved into water games that include the throwing of water balloons .

Bolivia

Main article: Carnaval de Oruro The Diablada , dance primeval, the typical and main dance of Carnaval de Oruro , a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity since 2001 in Bolivia
Bolivia
(Image: Fraternidad Artística y Cultural "La Diablada")

La Diablada Carnival
Carnival
takes place in Oruro in central Bolivia
Bolivia
. It is celebrated in honor of the miners' patron saint, Vírgen de Socavon (the Virgin of the Tunnels). Over 50 parade groups dance, sing, and play music over a five kilometre-long course. Participants dress up as demons, devils, angels, Incas, and Spanish conquistadors . Dances include caporales and tinkus . The parade runs from morning until late at night, 18 hours a day, for three days before Ash Wednesday. It was declared the 2001 "Masterpieces of Oral Heritage and Intangible Heritage of Humanity" by UNESCO
UNESCO
. Throughout the country, celebrations are held involving traditional rhythms and water parties. In Santa Cruz de la Sierra , on the east side of the country, tropical weather allows a Brazilian-type Carnival, with Comparsas dancing traditional songs in matching uniforms.

Brazil

Main article: Brazilian Carnival
Brazilian Carnival
Recife
Recife
Carnival, in the capital city of the State of Pernambuco, Recife
Recife
Carnival circuit of the city of Salvador

The Carnival
Carnival
in Brazil
Brazil
is a major part of Brazilian culture. It is sometimes referred to by Brazilians as the "Greatest Show on Earth". The first true Carnival
Carnival
expression of this Brazilian festivity, officially recognized by Brazilian historians, took place in Rio de Janeiro, with the préstitos, very similar to a musical processions, in 1641, when John IV of Portugal
Portugal
was crowned King and parties were celebrated in public streets.

Rio De Janeiro

Main article: Rio Carnival
Rio Carnival

The street carnival of Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro
is designated by Guinness World Records as the largest carnival in the world, with approximately two million people each day.

Samba
Samba
schools are large, social entities with thousands of members and a theme for their song and parade each year. In Rio Carnival
Rio Carnival
, samba schools parade in the Sambadrome
Sambadrome
(sambódromo in Portuguese). Some of the most famous include GRES Estação Primeira de Mangueira , GRES Portela , GRES Imperatriz Leopoldinense , GRES Beija-Flor de Nilópolis , GRES Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel , and recently, Unidos da Tijuca and GRES União da Ilha do Governador
GRES União da Ilha do Governador
. Local tourists pay $500–950, depending on the costume, to buy a samba costume and dance in the parade. Blocos are small informal groups with a definite theme in their samba, usually satirizing the political situation. About 30 schools in Rio gather hundreds of thousands of participants. More than 440 blocos operate in Rio. Bandas are samba musical bands, also called "street carnival bands", usually formed within a single neighborhood or musical background. The Carnival
Carnival
industry chain amassed in 2012 almost US$1 billion in revenues.

Recife, Pernambuco

Main article: Recife
Recife
Carnival
Carnival

Recife
Recife
is marked by the parade of the largest carnival block in the world, the Galo da Madrugada . This parade happens on the first Saturday of Carnival
Carnival
(Saturday of Zé Pereira), passes through the center of the city of Recife
Recife
and has, as symbol, a giant cock that is positioned in the Duarte Coelho Bridge. In this block, there is a great variety of musical rhythms, but the most present is Frevo (characteristic rhythm of both Recife
Recife
and Olinda
Olinda
that was declared Intangible Heritage of Humanity by Unesco).

Salvador, Bahia

Main article: Bahian Carnival

Salvador has large Carnival
Carnival
celebrations, including the Axé , a typical Bahia music. A truck with giant speakers and a platform, where musicians play songs of local genres such as Axé, samba-reggae , and Arrocha , drives through town with a crowd following while dancing and singing. It was originally staged by two Salvador musicians, Dodo ">

Three circuits make up the festival. Campo Grande is the longest and most traditional. Barra-Ondina is the most famous, on the seaside of Barra Beach and Ondina Beach and Pelourinho.

International singers like David Guetta
David Guetta
, will.i.am , Psy , and Bob Sinclar have performed in Salvador. Ivete Sangalo
Ivete Sangalo
, Claudia Leitte , Daniela Mercury , Margareth Menezes , Chiclete com Banana , and Banda Eva are some traditional attractions. The party officially takes six days, but can continue for more than that.

Colombia

The Blacks and Whites\' Carnival
Carnival
in Pasto Main article: Carnival
Carnival
in Colombia
Colombia

Carnival
Carnival
was introduced by the Spaniards and incorporated elements from European cultures . It has managed to reinterpret traditions that belonged to Colombia's African and Amerindian
Amerindian
cultures. Documentary evidence shows that Carnival
Carnival
existed in Colombia
Colombia
in the 18th century and had already been a cause for concern for colonial authorities, who censored the celebrations, especially in the main political centres such as Cartagena , Bogotá
Bogotá
, and Popayán .

The Carnival
Carnival
continued its evolution in small/unimportant towns out of view of the rulers. The result was the uninterrupted celebration of Carnival
Carnival
festivals in Barranquilla
Barranquilla
(see Barranquilla\'s Carnival
Carnival
), now recognized as one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. The Barranquilla
Barranquilla
Carnival
Carnival
includes several parades on Friday and Saturday nights beginning on 11 January and ending with a six-day non-stop festival, beginning the Wednesday prior to Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
and ending Tuesday midnight. Other celebrations occur in villages along the lower Magdalena River
Magdalena River
in northern Colombia, and in Pasto and Nariño (see Blacks and Whites\' Carnival
Carnival
) in the south of the country. In the early 20th century, attempts to introduce Carnival
Carnival
in Bogotá
Bogotá
were rejected by the government. The Bogotá Carnival
Carnival
was renewed in the 21st century.

Ecuador

Party
Party
in Latacunga
Latacunga
city

In Ecuador
Ecuador
, the celebrations began before the arrival of Catholicism. The Huarangas Indians (from the Chimbos nation) used to celebrate the second moon of the year with a festival at which they threw flour, flowers, and perfumed water. This indigenous tradition merged with the Catholic
Catholic
celebration of Carnival.

A common feature of Ecuadorian Carnival
Carnival
is the diablitos (little devils) who play with water. As with snowball fights, the practice of throwing or dumping water on unsuspecting victims is revered by children and teenagers although feared by some adults. Throwing water balloons, sometimes even eggs and flour both to friends and strangers is fun, but can also upset the uninformed.

Although the government as well as school authorities forbid such games, they are widely practiced. Historians tell of a bishop in 1867 who threatened excommunication for the sin of playing Carnival
Carnival
games.

Festivals differ across the country. Locals wear disguises with colorful masks and dance. Usually, the celebrations begin with the election of Taita Carnival
Carnival
(Father Carnival) who heads the festivities and leads the parades in each city.

The most famed Carnival
Carnival
festivities are in Guaranda (Bolivar province) and Ambato (Tungurahua province). In Ambato, the festivities are called Fiesta de las Flores y las Frutas (Festival of the Flowers and Fruits). Other cities have revived Carnival
Carnival
traditions with colorful parades, such as in Azogues (Cañar Province). In Azogues and the Southern Andes
Andes
in general, Taita Carnival
Carnival
is always an indigenous Cañari . Recently, a celebration has gained prominence in the northern part of the Andes
Andes
in the Chota Valley
Chota Valley
in Imbabura which is a zone of a strong Afro-Ecuadorian population and so the Carnival
Carnival
is celebrated with bomba del chota music.

Latacunga
Latacunga
celebrates Carnival
Carnival
in three manners: Carnival
Carnival
with water where people play with water, religious Carnival
Carnival
where people make religious festivity, and Carnival
Carnival
parade in the city in which people march on the Latacunga
Latacunga
streets wearing masks while they dance with music bands.

French Guiana

The Carnival
Carnival
of French Guiana
French Guiana
has roots in Creole culture. Everyone participates – mainland French, Brazilians (Guiana has a frontier with Brazil), and Chinese as well as Creoles.

Its duration is variable, determined by movable religious festivals: Carnival
Carnival
begins at Epiphany and ends on Ash Wednesday, and so typically lasts through most of January and February. During this period, from Friday evening until Monday morning the entire country throbs to the rhythm of masked balls and street parades.

Friday afternoons are for eating galette des rois (the cake of kings) and drinking champagne. The cake may be flavoured with frangipani , guava , or coconut .

On Sunday afternoons, major parades fill the streets of Cayenne
Cayenne
, Kourou
Kourou
, and Saint-Laurent du Maroni. Competing groups prepare for months. Dressed to follow the year's agreed theme, they march with Carnival
Carnival
floats, drums, and brass bands.

Brazilian groups are appreciated for their elaborate feathered and sequined costumes. However, they are not eligible for competition since the costumes do not change over time.

Mythical characters appear regularly in the parades:

* Karolin − a small person dressed in a magpie tail and top hat , riding on a shrew . * Les Nèg'marrons − groups of men dressed in red loincloths , bearing ripe tomatoes in their mouths while their bodies are smeared with grease or molasses . They deliberately try to come in contact with spectators, soiling their clothes. * Les makoumés − cross-dressing men (out of the Carnival
Carnival
context, makoumé is a pejorative term for a homosexual ). * Soussouris (the bat) − a character dressed in a winged leotard from head to foot, usually black in colour. Traditionally malevolent, this character is liable to chase spectators and "sting" them.

Four touloulous

A uniquely Creole tradition are the touloulous. These women wear decorative gowns, gloves, masks, and headdresses that cover them completely, making them unrecognisable, even to the colour of their skin. On Friday and Saturday nights of Carnival, touloulou balls are held in so-called "universities", large dance halls that open only at Carnival
Carnival
time. Touloulous get in free, and are even given condoms in the interest of the sexual health of the community. Men attend the balls, but they pay admittance and are not disguised. The touloulous pick their dance partners, who may not refuse. The setup is designed to make it easy for a woman to create a temporary liaison with a man in total anonymity. Undisguised women are not welcomed. By tradition, if such a woman gets up to dance, the orchestra stops playing. Alcohol is served at bars – the disguised women whisper to the men "touloulou thirsty", at which a round of drinks is expected, to be drunk through a straw protect their anonymity.

In more modern times, Guyanais men have attempted to turn the tables by staging soirées tololo, in which it's the men who, in disguise, seek partners from undisguised women bystanders.

The final four days of Carnival
Carnival
follow a rigid schedule, and no work is done:

* Sunday − The Grand Parade, in which the groups compete. * Monday − Marriage burlesque, with men dressed as brides and women as grooms. * Tuesday − Red Devil Day in which everyone wears red or black. * (Ash) Wednesday − Dress is black and white only, for the grand ceremony of burning the effigy of Vaval, King Carnival.

Peru

Morenada dance, in the Carnival
Carnival
of Juliaca Peru
Peru

Cajamarca

The town of Cajamarca is considered the capital of Carnival
Carnival
in Peru
Peru
. Local residents of all ages dance around the unsha, or yunsa, a tree adorned with ribbons, balloons, toys, fruits, bottles of liquor, and other prizes.

At a certain point, the Mayordomo (governor of the feast) walks into the circle. The governor chooses a partner to go to the unsha, which they attempt to cut down by striking it three times with a machete . The machete is passed from couple to couple as each strikes the tree three times. When the unsha finally falls, the crowd rushes to grab the prizes.

The person who successfully brings down the unsha becomes the following year's governor.

Violence

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The Peruvian Carnival
Carnival
consists mostly of violent games that last all February, extending to early March if Ash Wednesday
Ash Wednesday
falls in March, but rarely ending when it falls in February. Quoting the Lima
Lima
police chief, "The Carnival
Carnival
is associated with criminal actions." It has had major consequences.

Peruvian Carnival
Carnival
incorporates elements of violence and reflects the urban violence in Peruvian society following the internal conflict in Peru
Peru
. Traditionally, Peruvian Andean festivities were held on this period every year because it is the rainy season. It was already violent during the 19th century, but the government limited the practice. During the early 20th century, it consisted of partying and parading, while in the second half of the 20th century it acquired violent characteristics that continued. It was banned, first from the streets in 1958 and altogether in 1959 by the Prado government. It consisted basically of water battles in a traditional way, while in later years, it included playing with dirty water, mud, oil, and colorants -and also including fighting and sometimes looting private property and sexual assaults on women. It has become an excuse for criminal gangs to rob people while pretending to celebrate. As of 2010, it had become so violent that the government imposed penalties of up to eight years in prison for violence during the games. (The games themselves are not forbidden, but using violence during the games or coercing others to participate is.)

At the end of the Carnival
Carnival
season, in the inner Peruvian towns (and lately in the major cities too), it is customary to cut a tree, called "yunsa" in the mountains and "humisha" in the jungle.

Uruguay

Afro-Uruguayans gathering for a Candombe
Candombe
celebration, ca. 1870

The Carnival
Carnival
in Uruguay covers more than 40 days, generally beginning towards the end of January and running through mid March. Celebrations in Montevideo
Montevideo
are the largest. The festival is performed in the European parade style with elements from Bantu and Angolan Benguela cultures imported with slaves in colonial times. The main attractions of Uruguayan Carnival include two colorful parades called Desfile de Carnaval ( Carnival
Carnival
Parade) and Desfile de Llamadas (Calls Parade, a candombe -summoning parade).

During the celebration, theaters called tablados are built in many places throughout the cities, especially in Montevideo. Traditionally formed by men and now starting to be open to women, the different Carnival
Carnival
groups (Murgas , Lubolos, or Parodistas) perform a kind of popular opera at the tablados, singing and dancing songs that generally relate to the social and political situation. The 'Calls' groups, basically formed by drummers playing the tamboril, perform candombe rhythmic figures. Revelers wear their festival clothing. Each group has its own theme. Women wearing elegant, bright dresses are called vedettes and provide a sensual touch to parades.

European archetypes ( Pierrot , Harlequin
Harlequin
, and Columbina ) merge with African ancestral elements (the Old Mother or Mama Vieja, the Medicine Man or Gramillero and the Magician or Escobero) in the festival.

Venezuela

Carnival
Carnival
in Venezuela
Venezuela
covers two days, 40 days before Easter. It is a time when youth in many rural towns have water fights (including the use of water balloons and water guns). Any pedestrian risks a soaking. Coastal towns and provinces celebrate Carnival
Carnival
more fervently than elsewhere in the country. Venezuelans regard Carnival
Carnival
about the same way they regard Christmas
Christmas
and Semana Santa ( Holy Week ; the week before Easter
Easter
Sunday) when they take the opportunity to visit their families.

SEE ALSO

* Adloyada * Careto * Carnival of Basel
Carnival of Basel
* Carny * Cirque du Soleil
Cirque du Soleil
* Cologne
Cologne
Carnival
Carnival
* Culture of Popular Laughter * Fair
Fair
* Feast of Fools * Federation of European Carnival Cities * Mardi Gras * Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama
Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama
* New Orleans Mardi Gras * Sitalsasthi

NOTES

* ^ "Largest carnival". Guinness World Records. 2004-01-01. Retrieved 2016-02-11. * ^ Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Carnival". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. * ^ A B C D Bakhtin, Mikhail. 1984. Rabelais and his world. Translated by H. Iswolsky. Bloomington: Indiana University Press
Indiana University Press
. Original edition, Tvorchestvo Fransua Rable i narodnaia kul'tura srednevekov'ia i Renessansa, 1965. * ^ Barrows, Susanna; Room, Robin (1991). Drinking: Behavior and Belief in Modern History. University of California Press. pp. 404–. ISBN 9780520070851 . Retrieved 17 February 2015. * ^ Mauldin, Barbara (2004). ¡Carnaval!. Seattle: University of Washington Press . p. 75. * ^ "Pre-lenten festivals all over the world". philstar.com. * ^ Ruprecht, Tony (14 December 2010). Toronto's Many Faces. Dundurn. p. 115. ISBN 9781459718043 . Fastelavn, held the week before Lent, is the Danish Mardi Gras . This even takes place at the Danish Lutheran
Lutheran
Church and at Sunset Villa. * ^ "Frequently Asked Questions". The Danish Lutheran
Lutheran
Church & Cultural Center. 2014. Archived from the original on 18 February 2015. Retrieved 17 February 2015. We celebrate Danish traditions during our church year such as Fastelavn at lent (a Carnival
Carnival
for the kids at the beginning of the Lenten season), a Harvest Service in Fall and preparing for Advent
Advent
and Christmas
Christmas
with a Klippe-Klistre (Cut & Paste Decorations) in late November. Our Danish history and heritage is continuously incorporated into our services and events through the year and its seasons. * ^ Melitta Weiss Adamson, Francine Segan (2008). Entertaining from Ancient Rome
Rome
to the Super Bowl. ABC-CLIO . In Anglican countries, Mardis Gras is known as Shrove Tuesday-from shrive meaning "confess"-or Pancake Day-after the breakfast food that symbolizes one final hearty meal of eggs, butter, and sugar before the fast. On Ash Wednesday , the morning after Mardi Gras, repentant Christians return to church to receive upon the forehead the sign of the cross in ashes.

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Germany
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. * ^ " Carnival
Carnival
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REFERENCES

* Giampaolo di Cocco (2007) Alle origini del Carnevale: Mysteria isiaci e miti cattolici (Florence: Pontecorboli) * Valantasis, Richard (2000) Religions of late antiquity in practice * McGowan, Chris and Pessanha, Ricardo. "The Brazilian Sound: Samba, Bossa Nova and the Popular Music of Brazil." 1998. 2nd edition. Temple University Press. ISBN 1-56639-545-3 .

EXTERNAL LINKS

Wikisource
Wikisource
has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article CARNIVAL .

Blog Guide with Photos on Carnival
Carnival
in Goa
Goa
Carnival
Carnival
of Goa
Goa
2017

* v * t * e

Carnival
Carnival
around the world

ASIA

* Indonesia
Indonesia

* Solo * Jember

* Turkey

EUROPE

* Austria
Austria

* Belgium
Belgium

* Aalst * Binche
Binche

* Croatia
Croatia
* Denmark
Denmark
* England
England

*

.