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Lastovo Carnival

The exact year, in which the ritual of the Lastovo Carnival was first performed, is not known. The legend says that, when the Moors were besieging the town of Korčula in the Middle Ages, they sent a messenger to Lastovo with the request that the inhabitants surrender. Lastovo’s inhabitants captured the messenger and put him in prison. This is why the angry

Moors sent their ships to Lastovo to conquer it. A strong storm broke suddenly and blew away the enemy ships. After that, Lastovo’s inhabitants put the captured messenger on a donkey and took him around the whole village to mock him. Towards the evening, they put up a long rope between the hill, which is called the Carnival Hill (Pokladareva grža) today, and the bottom of the village, and lowered him on that rope. Later on, they took him to Dolac Square on the donkey and burned him with loud cries and ringing of the church bells. The Lastovo Carnival has been celebrated ever since. It is performed in accordance with very strict rules and procedure. It is peculiar and there is no other similar to it anywhere in the world.

It is one of the more valuable customs in Croatia, which is corroborated by the fact that the Croatian Ministry of Culture listed the Lastovo Carnival among the non-material cultural goods of the Republic of Croatia and put it under its protection on 17 January 2008.

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