Hurdes - Culture - Traditions - Carnival in Las Hurdes
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Carnival in Las Hurdes

The Carnival festivity in "Las Hurdes" has a traditional and mystical importance for the region being one of the best conserved historical reference. It is difficult to define the origin and starting point of the Carnival.

There are indicators leading to "El Cerezal" as the very beginning of the festivity. But without doubt it is the geographical environment as a whole which gives it the special character, involving the nature and mixed with the architecture made with stone and slate.

The anarchic spirit of the Carnival leads to the demonstration of strong relationships between the people, as it is shown by myths, legends and common fears which they try to abandon during the festivity.

Some of the adjectives describing this event are colourful and traditional. They are presented by some characters acting on the duality between human and animal, a custom which can be traced back to prehistorical times. The names of some of those characters are: "Burru antrueju", "machu lanú", "la mona"; "la tarara", "el cenizu", "obispu jurdanu", "diabrilluh" and "mozos del guinaldu". They are always accompanied by music (tambourines), a recital of popular songs, ballads and typical dances dating from old times. They usually provoke laughter and the participation of the singing people. That creates a very funny mood which conserves itself all day long.

Besides the folkloric part of the celebration there is another important part to be taken into consideration, the own gastronomy in the region. The most important proof for that is a common meal where every participant can take part in bringing each of the others something for the meal. The typical dish consists of a casserole of mixed vegetables and meat including beans, cabbage, pig meat, herbs and some bread. In order to digest the meal, they drink a home made brandy.

Fotografías cedidas por NCC Pinofranqueado

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