These days we celebrate the carnival. Although it is a custom that takes place in countries with a Catholic tradition, it’s roots derived from pre-Christian rites. One of the most famous rituals of the carnival is to disguise itself, a ritual which incorporates ancient traditions. This is not the only rite. For example, in Fabriano, as he wrote prof. Oreste Marcoaldi, took place hunting of Taurus, the two Carnival Sunday in Villa, the lighting of the tapers. However the most common ritual is to disguise itself, no one like Marcoaldi can describe it so perfectly, in his book “mores and prejudices of Fabrianese People” (Fabriano 1877) he wrote: “the carnival .. crazily in its most varied forms ..for mock costumes and istituzioni..è a period of insanity … transforming the city in a vast, perfect hospital for a crazy”. We can say that these rites so chaotic, even as he wrote the professor, brought chaos, destroying the established order. In fact these rites derive from very ancient cultures, consider for example a great civilization like the Babylonian. In ancient Babylon it is celebrated a ceremony, in which the participants represented the forces of Chaos. They were opposed to the creation of the Universe. They relive the event of the death and resurrection of the god Marduk savior. These rites performed after the spring equinox. hey served for revive to people the foundation of the Cosmos. In it the god Marduk was fighting and defeating the dragon Tiamat. AlsoThe rites in honor of Isis, the Egyptian goddess, was held with the presence of masked groups, as attested by the great Roman writer Lucius Apuleius. Even in the Greek Dionysian rites, and the Roman Saturnalia appear typical rituals of the carnival described by Marcoaldi. Finally we can say that the Carnival very old and interesting.

Paolo Carnevali

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