"Rosenmontag" (which means "running Monday" from the Kölsch word roose (run) and not Roses' Monday) is the highlight of the German "Karneval" (carnival), and is on the Collop Monday before Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. The "Mardi Gras," though celebrated on Tuesday, is a comparison. Rosenmontag is celebrated in German-speaking countries, including Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, but most heavily in the "Hochburgen", German carnival strongholds, which include the Rhineland (especially Cologne, Düsseldorf, Aachen, and Mainz).

The "Karneval" season begins at 39 minutes past the eleventh hour on the 12th of November and the "street carnival" starts on the Thursday before Rosenmontag, which is known as "Weiberfastnacht" ("women's carnival"). Karneval is prevalent in Roman Catholic areas and is a continuation of the old Roman traditions of slaves and servants being master for a day. Karneval derives from the Latin "Carne Vale" - literally "Goodbye Meat" marking the beginning of Lent.

Carnival is not a national holiday in Germany, but schools are closed on Rosenmontag and the following Tuesday in the strongholds and many other areas. Many schools as well as companies tend to give teachers, pupils and employees the friday before Rosenmontag off as well and have celebrations in school or in the working place on Weiberfastnacht, although every now and then there are efforts to cut these free holidays in some companies.

Celebrations usually include dressing up in fancy costumes, dancing, parades, heavy drinking and general public displays with floats. Every town in the Karneval areas boats at least one parade with floats making fun of the themes of the day. Usually sweets (Kamelle) are thrown into the crowds lining the streets among cries of "Helau" (Mainz area) or "Alaaf" (Cologne area) - a great experience for the young and young at heart. Little bottles of Kölnischwasser (eau de Cologne) are thrown into the crowd.

Things go quiet the next day, known as "Veilchendienstag" (Shrove Tuesday).

A Flock of Seagulls recorded a song called "Rosenmontag" for their 1983 album "Listen". The song was eventually used as a b-side and consisted of Arthur Baker-inspired hip-hop beats with guitar noise.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Rosenmontag — Rosenmontag: Die Bezeichnung für den Montag vor Fastnachtsdienstag hat sich aus niederrhein. rasen‹d›montag (beachte köln. rose »toben, tollen, ausgelassen sein«) entwickelt und bedeutet demnach also eigentlich »rasender (wilder, toller) Montag« …   Das Herkunftswörterbuch

  • Rosenmontag — Rosenmontag, der Montag nach dem »Rosensonntag« (Lätare), letzter Tag und Höhepunkt des rheinischen Karnevals …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Rosenmontag — Sm std. (19. Jh.) Stammwort. Der Montag vor Fasnacht heißt mit einem rheinischen Wort rosen(d)montag zu rasen im Sinn von tollen . deutsch s. Rose, s. Montag …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

  • Rosenmontag — Der Rosenmontag wird insbesondere im rheinischen Karneval als Höhepunkt der Karnevalszeit, oft mit dem so genannten Rosenmontagszug, begangen. Er fällt auf Montag vor dem Aschermittwoch; 48 Tage vor dem Ostersonntag. In sogenannten… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Rosenmontag — Ro|sen|mon|tag [ro:zn̩ mo:nta:k], der; [e]s, e: Montag vor Fastnacht: am Rosenmontag finden in vielen Städten große Umzüge statt. * * * Ro|sen|mon|tag 〈a. [′ ] m. 1〉 Montag vor Fastnacht [<niederrhein. rasen(d) Montag „rasender Montag“; zu… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Rosenmontag — m сумасшедший понедельник последний понедельник фашинга, когда веселье достигает своего апогея и проводится карнавальное шествие (Faschingsumzug) [букв. розовый понедельник от диалект. (кёльнского) Rusenmondaach (Ruse = Rose); восходит к слову… …   Австрия. Лингвострановедческий словарь

  • Rosenmontag — Ro·sen·mo̲n·tag der; der Montag vor Aschermittwoch || K : Rosenmontagsball, Rosenmontagszug …   Langenscheidt Großwörterbuch Deutsch als Fremdsprache

  • Rosenmontag — (schweiz.): Güdelmontag, Güdismontag …   Das Wörterbuch der Synonyme

  • Rosenmontag — Rusemondag (der) …   Kölsch Dialekt Lexikon

  • Rosenmontag — Ro|sen|mon|tag <zu rasen = tollen> (Fastnachtsmontag) …   Die deutsche Rechtschreibung

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