Today the Monchhichis have a lot of fun to celebrate Carnival.

History of Carnival
is a festive season which occurs immediately before Lent.
The Lenten period of the Liturgical year Church calendar, being the six weeks directly before Easter,
was marked by fasting and other pious or penitential practices.
Traditionally during Lent, no parties or other celebrations were held
and people refrained from eating rich foods, such as meat, dairy, fats and sugar.

In the days before Lent, all rich food and drink had to be disposed of.
The consumption of this, in a giant party that involved the whole community, is thought to be the origin of Carnival.

The Time Period of Carnival
The main events are usually during February.
Carnival typically involves a public celebration or parade combining some elements of a circus,
mask and public street party. People often dress up or masquerade during the celebrations,
which mark an overturning of daily life.

Monchhichi as Harlequin

The Harlequin
The Harlequin
 is the most popularly known of the comic servant characters from the Italian Commedia dell'arte.
The Harlequin is also known to be a type of clown.
Commedia dell'Arte
 is a form of theatre
 characterized by masked "types",
which began in Italy
in the 16th century and was responsible for the advent of the actress
and improvised performances
 based on sketches or scenarios.

Carnival Traditions
Some of the best-known traditions, including carnival parades
 and masquerade ball masquerading,
were first recorded in medieval Italy. The carnival of Venice was for a long time the most famous carnival.
In 1823 the first worldwide carnival parade took place in Cologne, Germany.

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Copyright of Monchhichi photos by Heike Andrea Grote.
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