Carnival in Cologne
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Carnival in Cologne
[ source: Wikipedia]
The Carnival in Cologne (Cologne vacation rentals | Cologne travel guide) has been celebrated for countless years and is one of the most prominent in the world. In Cologne, it is called the "5th Season," and this "season" is officially opened at 11 minutes after 11 on the 11th of November (the 11th month). After its opening, the season is temporarily suspended during the Advent and Christmas seasons, resuming again in earnest in the new year.
The Carnival in Cologne is officially begun at the Alter Markt, Cologne's downtown square, on the Thursday before the beginning of Lent. The Carnival lasts for one week between Fat Thursday and Ash Wednesday. The highlight of the Carnival in Cologne comes with the parade held on Rose Monday. During the festival, the typical greeting in Cologne is "Koelle Alaaf," which translates from Koelsch (the Cologne dialect) as "Cologne above all!"
Every year the Cologne Carnival features three special characters: the Prince, the Farmer, and the Virgin; these characters have been associated with the carnival since the 1820s. Each year, the individuals who play these figures pay for the honor of this status. The carnival prince is considered the highest representative of the carnival, and he leads the main parades through the city. He is the personification of the carnival, and he always wears a crown with a peacock tail, a golden chain, a belt with glittery stones, and a purple jacket. He carries a scepter and a slapstick. The farmer symbolizes the courage of the old privileged city of Cologne. He is the keeper of the city, and carries the city keys, a sword, and a flail. Traditionally played by a man, the virgin represents mother Colonia. Her Roman costume is meant to honor the Roman empress Agrippina, who was born in Cologne in 15 AD.
The Carnival in Cologne is one of the largest street festivals in Europe. Over 1 million spectators show up for the Rose Monday parade every year. Since 1823, the Carnival has been organized by the Festival Committee. Traditional events during the Carnival period include indoor balls and sessions, in addition to the street activities and processions. The Festival Committee also maintains the Cologne Carnival Museum that presents the history of the festival back to ancient times.
[ source: wikipedia.org ]
About this Article
This travel guide has been written by Rachel Hildebrandt.
Starting with her first trip to Germany at the age of 16, Rachel has traveled, worked, and studied in Germany extensively. Although her first encounter with German culture was in Lower Saxony, since that time the focus of her subsequent work as a freelance historian and translator has shifted eastward. Building on her graduate studies in Dresden, Rachel has worked for a variety of German foundations as a historian and translator, and is currently pursuing research pertaining to the Sorbs in Lusatia (eastern Saxony).
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Carnival has been celebrated in the City of Cologne since time immemorial. However, after the French Revolutionary troops left Cologne in 1814 and the Prussians took over, it was high time to organize the street carnival which, the new authority felt,…
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