Venezia header: Piazza San Marco - Riva degli Schiavoni

TOLERANZA RARA mask

(Extraordinary Acceptance)

“Toleranza rara” means from the ancient Italian: something that can be exceptionally tolerated, not in the normal state of things, but accepted, nevertheless.

It was stated in the law that Fat Thursday had to be celebrated every year after 1162 in Venice. That was Carnival, became Carnival celebrations.

But sometimes in the XVI century Carnival was suspended, because it was becoming too light-hearted, too wild and less of an official celebration.

Wild Carnival behaviour went on the same, of course, so it was recognized acceptable to go around town carrying a weapon (blades only!) to help maintain order - if needed - from the too much animosity of some of the participants.

Watercolor by Giovanni Grevembroch: "Toleranza rara" 18th century
Giovanni Grevembroch: "Toleranza Rara"
pen, ink & watercolor (18th century)
Museo Correr - Venezia

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