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  • English equivalent of 'carnival'. Carnival means 'taking away of flesh'.

    It is intelligible enough that before a long period of deprivations human nature should allow itself some exceptional licence in the way of frolic and good cheer.

    From New Advent.

    What a fine way of putting it!

    February 3, 2008

  • Lovely etymology for carnival. Thank you, gangerh.

    February 4, 2008

  • Wouldn't 'Carnival' come from 'carne vale', meaning 'farewell to meat', a reference to the period of abstinence that is about to begin?

    February 4, 2008

  • Almost.

    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" (carne levare) which marked the beginning of Lent.

    New Advent.

    February 4, 2008

  • From the 'take our word for it' website:

    Finally, there is a celebration which occurs during the weekend before Ash Wednesday: carnival. The term entered English in the 16th century and comes from Medieval Latin carnelevamen (carne "meat" + levamen, a derivative of levare "lift, raise"). Thus, carnival means, etymologically, the lifting out or removal of meat from the diet (for Lent). Some trace the roots of carnival to carne and vale, the latter being a derivative of a Latin word meaning "to leave", but this is incorrect.

    February 4, 2008