All the food that had survived the winter had to be eaten to assure that everyone was fed enough to survive until the coming spring would provide new food sources.

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As early as the year 325, the First Council of Nicaea attempted to end these pagan festivals.

The Lenten period of the liturgical calendar, the six weeks directly before Easter, was historically marked by fasting, study, and other pious or penitential practices.

During Lent, no parties or celebrations were held, and people refrained from eating rich foods, such as meat, dairy, fat, and sugar.

The first three classes were often totally unavailable during this period because of late winter shortages.

state that the word comes from the Late Latin expression carne vale, which means "farewell to meat", signifying the approaching fast.

The word carne may also be translated as flesh, producing "a farewell to the flesh", a phrase embraced by certain carnival celebrants to embolden the festival's carefree spirit.

It was a time for adult converts to prepare for baptism at Easter.

As with other Christian festivals such as Christmas, which was originally a pagan midwinter festival, the Christian church has found it easier to absorb the pagan Carnaval into its religious tradition than to eliminate it.

Centuries later, his statements were adapted as the building blocks of the Indiculus superstitionum et paganiarum ("small index of superstitious and pagan practices"), which was drafted by the Synod of Leptines in 742. Pope Gregory the Great (590–604) decided that fasting would start on Ash Wednesday.