Carnival on the Amalfi Coast
A thousand year old festivity, known all over the world, a day when everything is possible or almost ... we are talking about the Carnival. From Rio de Janeiro to Venice it is a festivity that involves everyone, from children to adults.
Carnaval, Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras, Karneval or in any other language you want to call it, this festivity has very ancient origins, dating back to the feasts in honor of the god Dionysus in Greece and the Roman’s "Saturnals", when for a few days the constituted order was reversed and everything was possible.
So, also thanks to the masks, typical symbol of the Carnival, the roles are reversed and even if for a short time the servants become rich people and vice versa.
The term Carnevale, from the Latin “carnem levare”, which means depriving youself of the meat, refers to the last banquet before the beginning of Lent, which is “Martedì Grasso” (Fat Tuesday) when caloric and rich foods are eaten.
We also find this tradition on the Amalfi Coast, where on this day in most houses people prepare the "lasagna" and typical local desserts such as "chiacchiere" and "castagnole".
Especially in Maiori, one of the little towns on the Amalfi Coast, the tradition of Carnival is more ingrained, here the culinary tradition is combined with the one of the masters of papier-mache, who modeling the iron by hand and using the paper mache give life to the so-called allegorical carts or floats, where invented and real characters tell magic stories, thanks also to the use of spectacular colors.
Every year, since 1971, the allegorical carts built by the various groups parade along the big seafront, attracting hundreds of spectators who come from neighboring countries and from other places and who decide to enjoy a holiday on the Amalfi Coast.
For anyone who wishes to visit the Amalfi Coast during the winter time, Maiori’s Carnival is definitely an appointment not to be missed, to know less known, but equally interesting aspects of this place. And remember that "what happens at Carnival stays at Carnival!”
Photo courtesy ilvescovado.it