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The historical origins of Mardi Gras are much debated, but many of its traditions seem to have their roots in early Celtic Christian rituals in ancient Gaul, Ireland, and Scotland—which, in turn, seem to have even earlier Greek and Egyptian antecedents.Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, is a celebration of life’s excesses before the austere self-sacrifices of the Christian season of …

Mardi Gras

The historical origins of Mardi Gras are much debated, butmany of its traditions seem to have their roots in early Celtic Christianrituals in ancient Gaul, Ireland, and Scotland—which, in turn, seem to haveeven earlier Greek and Egyptian antecedents….

New Year Celebrations

Thecelebration of the New Year did not occur on the first day of January until after theintroduction of the Gregorian calendar in 1582—and even then only in France, thenorthern Italian city states, Portugal, and in the Spanish nations of Castileand A…

Martin Bucer

Martin Bucer was born on this day, Martinmas, in 1491 in the Alsace-Lorraineborderland between France and Germany. He would eventually become one of the most influential men in the GreatReformation.He served as a mediator between Luther, Zwingli, …

Le Tour: 4

It was “deja vu all over again” at the Tour de France following the team time trial in Stage 4, as 37-year-old Lance Armstrong came within a spoke’s width of going into the overall lead of the race and capturing the yellow jersey. Now the stage is set…

Le Tour: 3

After two stages, Lance Armstrong and his Astana teammates have dominated the 96th Tour de France, managing to hold four of the top ten positions. Today’s stage takes the peloton the 121 miles from Marseille to La Grande Motte. It is a flat “sprinter…

Le Tour

The 21 stage, 2,200 mile Tour de France begins tomorrow in Monte Carlo with a very challenging individual time trial. On the way to the finish on the Champs Élysées, the Tour will not only run through France but through the Principality of Monaco, t…