The origin of the word isn’t clear, but it possibly can be traced back to the Latin carnem levare, which means” to take away” or “remove meat”, as Christians would avoid meat ahead of Easter.
Traditionally, Shrove Tuesday is the last day for Christians to eat rich, tasty foods before giving them up for lent – and what better way to do so than with delicious pancakes! Pancake Day has become a huge phenomenon in some countries, including Canada, Australia and the UK, but there are many other ways it is celebrated.
Mardi Gras – French, meaning Fat Tuesday – indicates time to party in many countries, with cities around the world transforming into vibrant, colourful displays of celebration, especially the famous Carnival in the French Quarter in New Orleans, Louisiana.
In Italy, Shrove Tuesday marks the end of the Carnival, among the most famous is the one happening in Venice, which see’s people flocking from all over the world to experience masquerade balls, gondola and floats parades and concerts.
Whilst in Brazil, the biggest carnival in the world takes place in Rio de Janeiro, with millions of people filling the city’s streets. Held annually since 1723, the carnival is considered the greatest show on earth, with giant floats, Samba dancers, traditional music and exotic costumes reflecting Brazil’s colourful culture.