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Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras refers to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after the Christian feasts of the Epiphany (Three King's Day) and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday.

Mardi Gras is French for "Fat Tuesday", reflecting the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season.

Mardi Gras only became a holiday in 1582, when Pope Gregory XIII placed it on his Gregorian calendar on the day before Ash Wednesday.

The holiday arrived in North America in the late 17th century with the LeMoyne brothers who had come to defend France's claim on Louisiana.

In 1723, the capital of Louisiana was moved to New Orleans, The first Mardi Gras parade held in New Orleans is recorded to have taken place in 1837. The tradition in New Orleans expanded to the point that it became synonymous with the city in popular perception, and embraced by residents of New Orleans beyond those of French or Catholic heritage.

About 1.4 million people attend Mardi Gras in New Orleans every year, but the population for the rest of the year is just over 384,000.

Mardi Gras Day, New Orleans: Krewe of Kosmic Debris revelers on Frenchmen Street. By Infrogmation of New Orleans - photo by Infrogmation Wikipedia Commons

Popular hotels in New Orleans put grease on balcony support poles during Mardi Gras so drunks can't climb in.

In the United Kingdom and Ireland, Pancakes have a place among Easter foods, especially on Shrove Tuesday (or Mardi Gras), the last day before Lent. "Shrove" is derived from the word "shrive," meaning "confess".

The Carnival of Brazil is an annual Brazilian festival held between the Friday afternoon (51 days before Easter) and Ash Wednesday at noon, which marks the beginning of Lent. Carnival is the most famous Brazilian holiday. During this time, Brazil attracts 70% of its tourists.


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