Definition of carnival in English:

carnival

noun

  • 1A period of public revelry at a regular time each year, typically during the week before Lent in Roman Catholic countries, involving processions, music, dancing, and the use of masquerade.

    ‘the culmination of the week-long carnival’
    ‘Mardi Gras is the last day of carnival’
    [as modifier] ‘a carnival parade’
    • ‘Thousands of visitors are expected to head for Devizes on Monday for the free carnival street festival’
    • ‘Dragons, banners, large flowers and other willow objects will be created in the workshops to use in the carnival procession.’
    • ‘The town of Binche is famous for its carnival festivities in the weeks before Lent.’
    • ‘Devizes was alive with colour and music as the carnival procession wound its way through the town on Saturday.’
    • ‘On Saturday, September 4, the carnival procession will leave from the Green at 6pm.’
    • ‘Bromham was awash with colourful floats and costumes as residents celebrated in the carnival procession on Saturday.’
    • ‘The village will be busy with range of events, culminating with the carnival fête and procession on June 26.’
    • ‘There was a real party atmosphere in Melksham at the weekend as the town celebrated its annual carnival.’
    • ‘All eyes were on the sky over Pewsey on Saturday as rain poured down just hours before the annual carnival parade was due to start.’
    • ‘Each year the carnival procession parades through the centre of Calne starting from the Porte Marsh Industrial Estate.’
    • ‘Threatening storms stayed away until the end of the carnival procession when those on the floats and spectators heading home were drenched.’
    • ‘Youngsters dressed up and filled the streets of Guiseley for the annual carnival parade at the weekend.’
    • ‘The festival will begin with a carnival parade setting off from Main Road.’
    • ‘Later in the afternoon the golden jubilee festival carnival and procession takes place in The Mall.’
    • ‘More than 3000 men, women, children and dogs joined the carnival procession as it weaved through Edinburgh's city centre.’
    • ‘The August bank holiday weekend will see Durrow host its annual carnival.’
    • ‘Festival fever will hit Durrow this August Bank Holiday weekend when the annual carnival takes place.’
    • ‘Unless there is more public support the annual carnival procession in Marlborough could disappear.’
    • ‘The sun also came out as the procession of floats wound its way to the carnival field and then paraded through the town on Saturday.’
    • ‘The boxes will be used to collect cash for charities and organisations taking part in the carnival procession.’
    festival, fiesta, fete, gala, jamboree, holiday, celebration, party
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A public event or celebration, typically held outdoors and offering entertainment and exhibitions.
      ‘he helped judge the ice-sculpture contest at the college's winter carnival’
      • ‘We have been present at a number of local carnivals during the summer, set up several stalls in and around the city centre, and sponsor the Junior Football League.’
      • ‘On the carnival yours truly has a modest little stall.’
      • ‘She is involved with the Women's Institute, the local memorial hall, local schools, the local carnival and is a church warden.’
      • ‘The branch ran two stalls at the local carnival, raising about £400 for funds.’
      • ‘Having flexible hours enables her to attend the odd school carnival.’
      • ‘Ron and Eileen were born in the same maternity unit, posed as "bride and groom" at a town carnival aged four, married for real at 21 and now, 70 years later, are celebrating their platinum wedding anniversary.’
      • ‘Shop assistant Jeanette, from Accrington, was a former beauty queen who clinched two local carnival titles.’
      • ‘Far North Coast athletes have few opportunities to test themselves in competition outside of the traditional school carnivals.’
      • ‘The spectacle attracted thousands of tourists to the town as the local carnival queen—or "Flower Queen", as she was known—led the parade.’
      • ‘Way back in March our local carnival float committee decided on its theme of 'Ashes Fever', anticipating a heady summer of cricket, with a Jack Russell dressed in whites on the float.’
    2. 1.2 An exciting or riotous mixture of something.
      ‘the whole evening was a carnival of fun’
      • ‘One of the more exciting developments in weblogging has been the proliferation of carnivals.’
      • ‘Here, the web of linguistic and visual signs returns the viewer to the terrain of the carnival.’
      • ‘But there is no comfort in a continuously constructed carnival of bands and opera singers.’
  • 2North American A traveling amusement show or circus.

    • ‘Ever noticed the remarkable similarity between these fairs and traveling roadside carnivals.’
    • ‘In fact, the church has never been able to compete with the carnival or circus in delivering fun to the folks in the pew.’
    • ‘It conjures up old reveries of carnivals and roadside zoos, sideshows and state fairs - huge tents fetid with the sweet stench of anticipation.’
    • ‘Mom's favorite brother, Uncle George, arrives in town with his traveling carnival.’
    • ‘In the back of the book was a section about the foods invented at fairs, circuses and carnivals.’
    • ‘In the case of carnivals, world fairs, and freak shows, the promotion of human oddities relied on meticulously crafted public personas.’
    • ‘Diane Arbus traveled about, seeking out the inhabitants of carnivals, nudist camps, and mental hospitals and asking them to look straight into her camera.’
    • ‘As an eager visitor to amusement parks, theme parks, carnivals, and state fairs of all magnitude, I was used to all manners of muzak being piped to all corners of the festival grounds.’
    • ‘Mark Svenvold has retraced McCurdy's life, death and eventful afterlife in a fascinating tale of the macabre under-belly of American sideshows and carnivals.’
    • ‘As a result, Truzzi was intrigued by magic, juggling, sideshows, carnivals, and circuses.’
    • ‘After all they have been used to host carnivals and circuses.’
    • ‘He has had a varied employment history including factory work and a job travelling with a carnival.’
    • ‘At various times he has told us that he ran away from school to join a carnival, was descended from Sioux Indians, was an orphan and had been a hobo.’
    • ‘He later returned to England, where in poverty he was forced to sell his tattooed face in a travelling carnival.’
    • ‘Zoos have been around for hundreds of years, the first ones being like freak shows attached to carnivals and circuses.’
    • ‘One young woman described spending several years traveling intermittently with various carnivals.’
    • ‘You know, there's one of those travelling carnivals coming to town this weekend, and he said he would take me.’
    • ‘A true oddity, it's a film about some twisted racketeers involved with a travelling carnival.’
    • ‘It was a different business then, more of a travelling carnival, and he didn't encourage his son.’
    funfair, circus, fair, amusement show, sideshows
    View synonyms

Origin

Mid 16th century: from Italian carnevale, carnovale, from medieval Latin carnelevamen, carnelevarium Shrovetide from Latin caro, carn- flesh + levare put away.

Pronunciation:

carnival

/ˈkärnəvəl/