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Book: Pagan Religions in Five Minutes

Chapter: 47. Is Carnival a Pagan Festival?

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.45514


Carnival is a festival with nearly a thousand years of history that draws heavily from pre-existing European ritual celebrations, including ancient Roman festivals. Initially connected to the Christian liturgical calendar and the period of Lent, Carnival integrated religious observances with festive indulgence. Although often condemned as “pagan” or diabolical, Carnival flourished among the European populace. Over time, Carnival transformed, experiencing a recent revival, as a form of cultural reappropriation.

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