The Fight Between Carnival and Lent

File:Pieter Bruegel the Elder- The Fight between Carnival and Lent detail 3.jpg

Pieter Brueghel the Elder

The Battle between Carnival and Lent was a folk custom in the Netherlands – a mock battle in which revelry warred with control, marking the boundary between winter and spring.  Hmmm. Isn’t this a metaphor for all the internal struggles we face – between self-discipline and happy excess, lazy joy and deferred gratification? No matter: go make a few pancakes, make your Lenten intentions and get your ashes on your head tomorrow.

 

Jan Miense Molenaer

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