Friday, 12 January 2018
Working for the carnival
Two main variants can be distinguished: the Rhineland carnaval, found in the province of Limburg, and the Bourgondische carnaval, found mainly in North Brabant. Maastricht, Limburg's capital, holds a street carnaval that features elaborate costumes.
The first known documentation dates from the late 8th century (Indiculus superstitionum et paganiarum), but Carnaval was already mentioned during the First Council of Nicaea in 325 and by Caesarius of Arles (470-542) around 500 CE. In the Netherlands itself, the first documentation is found in 1383 in 's-Hertogenbosch. The oldest-known images of Dutch Carnaval festivities date from 1485, also in 's-Hertogenbosch.
Normal daily life comes to a stop for about a week in the southern part of the Netherlands during the carnival, with roads temporary blocked and many local businesses closed for the week as a result of employees who are en masse taking the days off during and the day after the carnival.