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Still, each spring – this is the beginning of a new cycle, the next round of existence. In early March, we sincerely, sincerely rejoice in the first, finally warming rays of the sun, dream, together with the nature of the revival, childishly open to hearing from life something new, bright.

No wonder many cultures celebrate the New Year in the spring. At the same Slavic born inherently unique tradition that has come down to us as Mardi Gras. What are we, today, we know about it?

Pagan origins

Nobody no longer deny that the Carnival – a legacy of the pre-Christian past. Feast of the rebirth of nature, the vernal equinox, Fertility – all united by a Mardi Gras in those days, when Christianity had not yet come to our lands.

Pancakes

Yes, Pancake pagan roots, that’s true. But relative to the main attribute of Carnival, pancakes, various rumors are prevalent. The story goes like pancakes – it is a symbol of the sun. The view is beautiful and plausible.

But do not forget, that in fact the pancakes were the main memorial dish of our ancestors! Pancake days in the spring were considered in the ancient days of remembrance of the dead. When the role of these days took the “SATURDAY”, pancakes become a wonderful treat, perfectly fit into the concept of Carnival.

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scarecrow

Farewell to winter ended with the burning of her effigy on the last day of Carnival. Farmers dispel prevalent ashes “winter” on the margins: they believed that this ritual will improve land fertility.

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The narrow and wide

We at the hearing only talk about a wide Shrovetide. But it starts Thursday! Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – this Mardi Gras narrow.

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Tuzhilki on Shrovetide

Nowadays Carnival ends with Sunday. Earlier it heard echoes of the next week, with pancakes (already meatless) and quiet (if at all) festivities.

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Carnivals

In the Catholic world, there is an analogue of the Slavic Shrovetide: Carnival. He continued not a week, since Catholics begin Lent on Ash Wednesday. Fat Tuesday is accompanied not only mountains of goodies, but also bright costume parade through the streets. By the way, the word “carnival” is derived from the Latin words “goodbye” and “meat”. Meat, goodbye until Easter!

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From two weeks to one

Our ancestors, by the way, loved and celebrated Shrove Tuesday it is not just one but as many as two weeks. Patriarch Adrian, advocated strict adherence to church regulations, in the XVII century, tried to cancel the celebration of Pancake Day. However, even his supporters considered such a step too categorical. Patriarch could only shorten the duration of the festivities, abolishing motley week preceding the narrow and wide Shrovetide.

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Meatfare

With the advent of Christianity for Carnival firmly entrenched week before Lent. This week has already banned meat, but still allowed dairy products – which, of course, gives a flight of fancy in respect of pancakes!

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Features of the service

Of course, with the approach of Lent is changing not only and not so much the quality of the food. According to the church calendar Mardi Gras – a week of memories of the Last Judgment. It begins to change service. On Wednesday and Friday, do not serve the liturgy – in fact festive service. The first words of the prayer of Saint Ephrem. So far only twice, foreshadowing the ascension of the many prayers for seven consecutive weeks.

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Forgiveness Sunday

Ends “ohristianivshayasya” Mardi Gras is very touching and important day: Sunday before Lent. Entering into Lent, the Orthodox tend to leave all the insults, debts and misunderstandings of the past. To nothing clouded path of Maslenitsa – Easter.

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