Carnival 2015 Around the World

Carnival season 2015 is underway across Europe and the Americas. These pre-Lent festivals, often a blend of local pagan and catholic traditions, usher out the winter and welcome in spring. The largest and most famous—the Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil—took place this weekend.  Gathered here are images of carnivals around the world, including images from Spain, Brazil, Trinidad and Tobago, Germany, France, and more. [40 photos total]

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1
Revelers of the Mocidade Indepedente samba school perform during the first day of carnival parade at the Sambodrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on February 16, 2015. (Christophe Simon/AFP/Getty Images) #
2
The traditional Columbine descends from Saint Mark's tower bell on an iron cable during the Venetian Carnival in Venice, Italy, on February 8, 2015. (Reuters/Stefano Rellandini) #
3
A masked reveller poses in St. Mark's Square during the Venice Carnival on February 7, 2015. (Reuters/Stefano Rellandini) #
4
Men covered in oil and soot carrying bull horns on their head and cowbells on a belt representing devils, march during a traditional carnival celebration in the small village of Luzon, Spain, on February 14, 2015. Preserved records from the 14th century document Luzon's carnival, but the real origin of the tradition could be much older. Carnival festivals are celebrated in their own way around hundreds of villages in Spain. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki) #
5
Sheldon Best is seen in his costume "Once In A Blue Moon", which won the Traditional Moko Jumbie category of the National Carnival Commission's competition held at Victoria Square, in the capital Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, on February 13, 2015. (Reuters/Andrea De Silva) #
6
Marlon Rampersad portraying "Wild Fire" performs at the King of Carnival show organised by the National Carnival Commission at the Queen's Park Savannah in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, on February 13, 2015. (Reuters/Andrea De Silva) #
7
Members of the Kaisokah Moko Jumbies perform with fire on the waterfront near their San Fernando, Trinidad base, on February 10, 2015. (Reuters/Andrea De Silva) #
8
Workers set up a large mannequin figure depicting the King of the Carnival during preparations for the 131st Nice carnival parade, Friday, February 13 , 2015, in Nice, southeastern France. The Carnival, running from February 13 until March 1, 2015, celebrates the "King of Music". (AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau) #
9
Members of rival teams fight with oranges during an annual carnival battle in the northern Italian town of Ivrea on February 15, 2015. Dressed up as Middle Age kings' guards, a group of men ride in a horse-drawn carriage and pelt 'foot soldiers' with oranges as thousands of people gather to re-enact a Middle Age battle when the townsfolk of Ivrea overthrew an evil king. In a strange twist, instead of swords and cross bows, these days the weapons of choice are oranges. (Reuters/Max Rossi) #
10
A member of a rival team is hit by an orange during an annual carnival battle in the northern Italian town of Ivrea on February 15, 2015. (Reuters/Max Rossi) #
11
Members of rival teams prepare to fight with oranges during an annual carnival battle in Ivrea, Italy, on February 15, 2015. (Reuters/Max Rossi) #
12
Dancers perform the traditional "Diablada" or Dance of the Devils during carnival celebrations in Oruro, Bolivia, on February 14, 2015. The Carnival of Oruro which is a religious festival dating back more than 2000 years in an ongoing pagan-catholic blend of religious practice in the region, and is one of UNESCO's Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. (AP Photo/Juan Karita) #
13
A man blows fire on a scarecrow with a mask depicting Russian president Vladimir Putin during celebrations to say farewell to winter in the western Ukrainian city of Uzhgorod on February 15, 2015. (Alexander Zobin/AFP/Getty Images) #
14
Performers operate horse balloons during the carnival parade on February 14, 2015 in Madrid, Spain. The carnival, which is believed to come from pagan festivals during the middle ages, takes place across Spain before Lent. This years Madrid's Carnival theme will be the novel 'Don Quijote de la Mancha' (Don Quixote) written by Miguel de Cervantes. (Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images) #
15
The chairwoman of the CDU in Rhineland-Palatinate celebrates with the 'Ranzengarde' Julia Kloeckner during the annual Rose Monday carnival parade on February 16, 2015 in Mainz, Germany. Rose Monday, in German called Rosenmontag, is the highpoint of the annual carnival season that has a rich and widespread tradition, particularly in southwestern Germany. (Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images) #
16
A float featuring Russia's President Vladimir Putin under the motto 'Problem-Baer' (Trouble-Bear) participates in the annual Rose Monday carnival parade on February 16, 2015 in Mainz, Germany. (Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images) #
17
A carnival float depicting an eye with 'Facebook and Google' written on it on it during the traditional Rose Monday carnival parade in Duesseldorf, Germany, on February 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein) #
18
A carnival float with a papier-mache caricature of 'lame duck' U.S. President Barack Obama, takes part in the traditional Rose Monday carnival parade in the western German city of Duesseldorf on February 16, 2015. The Rose Monday parades in Cologne, Mainz and Duesseldorf are the highlight of the German street carnival season. (Reuters/Ralph Orlowski) #
19
A local woman watches reveler from the Portuguese village of Lazarim dressed in a traditional carnival costume, during carnival festivities, in Lazarim, northeastern Portugal, on February 14, 2015. During the festivities, people in Lazarim wear special wooden masks made from alder trees by local carpenters. The carpenters receive several dozen orders for masks from revelers every year. The most popular masks are of queens, kings, evil spirits, hunters and satirical versions of public figures. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco) #
20
A child spins a ball of fire during rituals in celebration of Mesni Zagovezni (Shrovetide) in the village of Lozen near the capital Sofia, on February 15, 2015. People in the region believe they can chase away evil spirits by performing fire rituals on Mesni Zagovezni. (AP Photo/Valentina Petrova) #
21
People covered in mud dance during the traditional "Bloco da Lama" or "Mud Block" carnival party, in Paraty, Brazil, on February 14, 2015. Legend has it the "bloco" was born in 1986 after local teens hiking in a nearby mangrove forest smeared themselves with mud to discourage mosquitoes and then wandered through Paraty. The party grew year after year, but revelers eventually were banned from parading in the colonial downtown after shopkeepers complained pristine white walls were stained with the hard-to-remove mud. (AP Photo/Leo Correa) #
22
A reveler wearing a costume plays in the mud during the traditional "Bloco da Lama" or "Mud Block" carnival party, in Paraty, Brazil, on February 14, 2015. (AP Photo/Leo Correa) #
23
Revelers dressed as the traditional carnival characters 'Zaku Zaharrak', or old sack in Basque language, walk during the carnival parade of the small village of Lesaka, Spain, on February 15, 2015. After the sun set and covering their faces with white handkerchiefs, stuffed into sacks full of straw, and holding a stick with an inflated animal’s bladder used to hit people, the Zaku Zaharrak characters parade for hours trough the village dancing and singing while a band plays music. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza) #
24
A man with his face covered with a mask know as 'Mascarita' (mask) poses for a picture as he joins a carnival festival on February 14, 2015 in Luzon, Spain. Every year Luzon hosts one of the least-known carnival festival named 'La Fiesta de los Diablos y Mascaritas' (Festival of Devils and Masks). The event its believed to date from Celtic times, although the first written reference document the Luzon's Carnival from the 14th century. (David Ramos/Getty Images) #
25
People dance during the 'Simpatia e Quasi Amor' street parade along Ipanema beach during Carnival festivities on February 15, 2015 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Mario Tama/Getty Images) #
26
A reveler takes part in an annual block party known as "Ceu na Terra" (Heaven in Earth), one of the many carnival parties to take place in the neighborhoods of Rio de Janeiro February 14, 2015. (Reuters/Ricardo Moraes) #
27
Dancers from the Vila Isabel samba school participate in the annual carnival parade in Rio de Janeiro's Sambadrome on February 16, 2015. (Reuters/Ricardo Moraes) #
28
A dancer from the Gavioes da Fiel samba school performs during a carnival parade in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on February 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Andre Penner) #
29
Spectators stand in plastic rain slickers as they watch the Viradouro samba school file past in the Carnival parade at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on February 15, 2015. The skies opened up Sunday evening, about an hour ahead of the start of the all-night-long extravaganza, drenching revelers and flooding streets near the Sambadrome. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) #
30
A member of the Viradouro samba school performs on a float in the Carnival parade at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Sunday, February 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) #
31
Revellers from the Grande Rio samba school participate in the annual carnival parade in Rio de Janeiro's Sambadrome on February 16, 2015. (Reuters/Ricardo Moraes) #
32
Rainwater splashes up onto a performer on the float of the Viradouro samba school, during the Carnival parade at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on February 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) #
33
Performers from the Vila Isabel samba school parade during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, on February 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) #
34
A dancer from the Vila Maria samba school performs in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on February 14, 2015. (AP Photo/Andre Penner) #
35
Performers from the Mocidade samba school greet spectators from their float during the Carnival parade at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, on February 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) #
36
A dancer from the Mangueira samba school participates in the annual carnival parade in the Sambadrome on February 15, 2015. (Reuters/Ricardo Moraes) #
37
Revelers of the Mocidade Indepedente samba school perform during the first day of carnival parade at the Sambodrome in Rio on February 16, 2015. (Christophe Simon/AFP/Getty Images) #
38
Performers from the Mocidade samba school, at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, on February 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo) #
39
Performers from the Academicos do Grande Rio samba school parade in Rio de Janeiro on February 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) #
40
A performer from the Salgueiro samba school, during carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio, on Monday, February 16, 2015. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) #

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