Origin of Mardi Gras

Reporter: Ava Samm 

4 January 2022

The celebration of Mardi Gras goes back thousands of years to ancient Rome. Though the celebration’s original name is not for sure, the ancient Romans used Mardi Gras as a celebration for spring and fertility. Once Christianity came to Rome, the Mardi Gras season became a celebration that precedes Lent which is the 40 days of fasting and penance between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday. Traditionally, on Mardi Gras merrymakers would eat a lot of rich and fatty food. This was done in anticipation of several weeks of eating only fish (usually done by Catholics) and different types of fasting. Decades after the first American Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Louisiana, New Orleans and other French settlements began marking the holiday with street parties, masked balls, and lavish dinners.

Resources:Mardi Gras – Origin, Parade & Traditions – HISTORY