The Carnival of Venice
The Carnival of Venice is a traditional festival held in Venice and it is famous all over the world. It takes place every year, it lasts a few weeks and it culminates on Shrove Tuesday.
At Carnival people celebrate, eat abundantly, play jokes and parade through the streets dressed up in costumes. It is a joyful period that precedes the beginning of Christian Lent (40 days before Easter), which is traditionally a time of penitence and fasting.
Typical costumes and masks
During the Carnival season you can see people parading through the streets in a variety of different costumes and masks, from the typical historical Venetian costumes of the 1800s to the “Commedia dell’arte” costumes. The last includes some of the most famous characters of the Italian theatre such as Pantalone, Harlequin and Columbine.
As far as Carnival masks is concerned, two of the most popular ones are the “bauta” a simple white mask usually with a prominent nose and the Plague Doctor mask, a mask with a long bird-like beak whose origins date back to the plague times.
Traditional food during the Carnival season is fried pastries such as “crostoli” or “galani” -they take different names from region to region-,“frittelle” with or without pastry-cream filling, and “castagnole” all of them are must-eats in this period and are usually served with powdered sugar.
This year, due to the pandemic emergency we are living, this festival will not take place as usual. The city of Venice will not be crowded by tourists and people dressed up in costumes and in colorful masks. However, the Carnival was not cancelled but creatively transferred to the digital dimension: a lot of on-line events were and are being organised such as challenges, contests, laboratories, videos and other streaming events for everyone, from