October 2010
Masks Around World
Billie Silvey
Mardi Gras colors of purple, green and gold are
seen in this mask, on the feathered costume of a
Mardi Gras Indian, and on a float in the parade.
Mardi Gras is based on the celebration of Carnival in
Catholic countries of Europe, though some traditions date
back to pre-Christian times.  It also includes aspects of
medieval culture.

The masks below are of the typical Venetian style based
on fanciful versions of different historical periods.
It's October, and you can scarcely step into a store without
seeing various sorts of

Masks have been worn since very early times, either to
emphasize or to disguise what a person is like.  In the photo
above, my husband Frank and our daughter Kathy (right)
are shown with our friend Marla at her Carnival party
several years ago.  It illustrates how even a simple mask can
change our appearance.

Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday in New Orleans is the day
before Ash Wednesday.  It’s the day rich food was
cleared out of the house in preparation for Lent, and the
traditional way to clear it out was to eat it.

Mardi Gras was brought to Louisiana by early French
settlers.  The first recorded celebration was in 1699.

It is marked by parades and masked balls.  The parades are
organized by Carnival
krewes, or organizations.  Krewe
float riders toss
throws into the crowds, the most common
being colorful plastic beads and  aluminum or wooden dollar-
sized coins with the krewe logo.      
Masks in Drama
This website also includes articles on masks around the
world, masks in drama, and hypocrisy.

I hope you enjoy it, and that you'll write me at
b.silvey@sbcglobal.net with your comments.
An eclectic website about Women, Christianity, History,
Culture and the Arts--and anything else that comes to mind.