[Dixielandjazz] Re: Fat Tuesday

Kurt bowermastergroup at qwest.net
Wed Dec 17 00:13:08 PST 2003

>From the internet:

Shrove Tuesday, also known as "Fat Tuesday" or "Mardi Gras," Shrove Tuesday
is basically the day of preparation for Lent. The name "shrove" is rumored
to derive from the word "shrive" or confess. It takes place on the Tuesday
before Ash Wednesday (the first day of Lent). The tradition in the church of
having pancake suppers and the secular tradition of just plain partying
probably derives from the practice of feasting before the fast.

Shrovetide is the English equivalent of what is known in the greater part of
Southern Europe as the "Carnival", a word which, in spite of wild
suggestions to the contrary, is undoubtedly to be derived from the "taking
away of flesh" (camera levare) which marked the beginning of Lent.

The English term "shrovetide" (from "to shrive", or hear confessions) is
sufficiently explained by a sentence in the Anglo-Saxon "Ecclesiastical
Institutes" translated from Theodulphus by Abbot Aelfric (q.v.) about A.D.
1000: "In the week immediately before Lent everyone shall go to his
confessor and confess his deeds and the confessor shall so shrive him as he
then my hear by his deeds what he is to do [in the way of penance]". In this
name shrovetide the religious idea is uppermost, and the same is true of the
German Fastnacht (the eve of the fast). It is intelligible enough that
before a long period of deprivations human nature should allow itself some
exceptional license in the way of frolic and good cheer.

No appeal to vague and often inconsistent traces of earlier pagan customs
seems needed to explain the general observance of a carnival celebration.
The only clear fact which does not seem to be adequately accounted for is
the widespread tendency to include the preceding Thursday (called in French
Jeudi gras and in German fetter Donnerstag -- just as Shrove Tuesday is
respectively called Mardi gras and fetter Dienstag) with the Monday and
Tuesday which follow Quinquagesima.

The English custom of eating pancakes was undoubtedly suggested by the need
of using up the eggs and fat which were, originally at least, prohibited
articles of diet during the forty days of Lent. The same prohibition is, of
course, mainly responsible for the association of eggs with the Easter
festival at the other end of Lent. Although the observance of Shrovetide in
England never ran to the wild excesses which often marked this period of
license in southern climes, still various sports and especially games of
football were common in almost all parts of the country, and in the
households of the great it was customary to celebrate the evening of Shrove
Tuesday by the performance of plays and masques. One form of cruel sport
peculiarly prevalent at this season was the throwing at cocks, neither does
it seem to have been confined to England.

The festive observance of Shrovetide had become far too much a part of the
life of the people to be summarily discarded at the Reformation. In Dekker's
"Seven Deadly Sins of London", 1606, we read: "they presently, like
prentices upon Shrove-Tuesday, take the game into their own hands and do
what they list"; and we learn from contemporary writers that the day was
almost everywhere kept as a holiday, while many kinds of horseplay seem to
have been tolerated or winked at in the universities and public schools. The
Church repeatedly made efforts to check the excesses of the carnival,
especially in Italy. During the sixteenth century in particular a special
form of the Forty Hours Prayer was instituted in many places on the Monday
and Tuesday of Shrovetide, partly to draw the people away from these
dangerous occasions of sin, partly to make expiation for the excesses
committed. By a special constitution addressed by Benedict XIV to the
archbishops and bishops of the Papal States, and headed "Super
Bacchanalibus", a plenary indulgence was granted in 1747 to those who took
part in the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament which was to be carried out
daily for three days during the carnival season.

>From the Catholic Encyclopedia, copyright © 1913 by the Encyclopedia Press,
Inc. Electronic version copyright © 1997 by New Advent, Inc.

-----Original Message-----
From: dixielandjazz-bounces at ml.islandnet.com
[mailto:dixielandjazz-bounces at ml.islandnet.com]On Behalf Of Kurt
Sent: Wednesday, December 17, 2003 12:11 AM
To: Tom Wood; Dixieland Jazz
Subject: RE: [Dixielandjazz] Re: Fat Tuesday

Isn't is "Shrove" Tuesday?

-----Original Message-----
From: dixielandjazz-bounces at ml.islandnet.com
[mailto:dixielandjazz-bounces at ml.islandnet.com]On Behalf Of Tom Wood
Sent: Tuesday, December 16, 2003 11:30 PM
To: Dixieland Jazz
Subject: Fw: [Dixielandjazz] Re: Fat Tuesday

Phil are you the person that transferred our old cassettes (seven of them)
onto CD for the 2MBS-FM radio programme??  We played a Strove Tuesday open
air gig  where the Rotary provided and sold pancakes to the passing crowd
for some charity.  Is there any connection with Strove (pancake) Tuesday and
Fat Tuesday ???  Or maybe one just gets fat eating pancakes on Tuesdays !?

Tom Wood

----- Original Message -----
From: "Phil O'Rourke" <philor at webone.com.au>
To: "DJML" <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
Sent: Wednesday, December 17, 2003 2:27 PM
Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Re: Fat Tuesday

> Mick reminded us that Mardi Gras means. I still wonder how people can have
> Mardis Gras on a Saturday.
> Phil O'Rourke
> Australia
> Mardi (Tuesday) Gras (Fat)
> This is the day before the Fast of Lent starting on Ash Wednesday. During
> this day they used to have a big "Pig Out" and eat themselves silly before
> the fast.
> This was the origin of Mardi Gras
> _______________________________________________
> Dixielandjazz mailing list
> Dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
> http://ml.islandnet.com/mailman/listinfo/dixielandjazz

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