In the seventeenth century in Europe the term carnival gains the upper hand for parties typifying dressing up, parades and establishment of mockery with its own hierarchy and lavish eating and drinking. They spoke of Shrove Tuesday in the middle age, on which one can party all out just one more time with lots of food and drink after which on Ash Wednesday the Roman Catholic fasting starts as preparation for Easter. In one of the interpretations of the word carnival a relation is put between the exuberant feasting and subsequent imposed fasting: carne vale means farewell flesh. Another interpretation is the presumed deduction from the word carrus navalis, which is a ship vehicle that during Shrove Tuesday is pulled along the streets with on board, dressed up partying people.
Carnival in the Netherlands
The carnival is a feast that for three days, especially in the provinces of Limburg and North Brabant, holds the daily life in its grip. The carnival participants all dressed up move along the streets and meet up with others in bars and party wards. The party wards are decorated with masks and paper streamers and the party music has its own carnival repertoire.
The period of this celebration is subject to the variable date on which Easter is celebrated each year. The seventh Sunday preceding Easter Sunday is the carnival Sunday. The many Momo Kings take over the reign from the local civic authorities (yielding of authority or yielding of town keys) in the villages and towns on the Saturday or Sunday before carnival in a ritualistic manner for three days and celebrate with their subordinates, the carnival participants, temporary establishment of the jester realm. Carnival participants dress up in their desired costumes and take over the streets and bars in the three day carnival frenzy. On one of those three day carnival period they parade the streets: the triumphal procession of the Momo King. On the Shrove Tuesday around midnight collectively in different location with a closing ritual they bid farewell to the jester realm and the Momo King. Carnival mascots and symbols are burned, buried or drowned. Daily life is resumed on Ash Wednesday.