Carnival or Apokries in Greece

Greece’s Carnival season, known as «Apokries,» is a period which traditionally begins ten weeks before Greek Orthodox Easter and culminates on the weekend before «Clean Monday,» (Ash Monday) the first day of Lent, which is on March 3 this year.

This coming weekend, on March 1-2, carnival celebrations in Greece reach their climax, a feast of fun celebrated all over the country with masquerades and parties. The Greek name Apokries means abstention from meat, because after that, the period of Easter Lent begins.

The characteristic of Carnival is disguising and wearing costumes and masks that offer anonymity and freedom of expression. This festival dates back to Dionysos, the ancient Greek god of wine, fun and fertility. Even today, in certain local carnivals, like that of Tyrnavos, fertility and the phallus are celebrated, and related songs are sung. The biggest carnival that is organized in Greece is that of Patras. Other popular carnivals are that of Xanthi and Rethymno.

Article from Livin’ Lovin’.


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