Τσικνοπέμπτη

Τσικνοπέμπτη

Tsiknopempti (Greek: Τσικνοπέμπτη), literally Smelly Thursday, or even Charred, Smoky, or Barbeque Thursday «because of the smell of the grilled meat in the air», is part of the traditional celebrations for Carnival (in Greek: Αποκριά) season in Greece and Cyprus.

The three weeks of Carnival in Greece are, in order, «Prophoni» (in Greek: Προφωνή -Preannouncement Week), «Kreatini» (in Greek: Κρεατινή -Meatfare Week), and «Tyrofagou» (in Greek: Τυροφάγου -Cheesefare Week).

Tsiknopempti is the Thursday of the 2nd week of Apokria (the week of Kreatini), during which large amounts of meat are traditionally consumed prior to the arrival of Lent, the fasting season leading up to Easter. In the Greek Orthodox tradition, fasting on Wednesday and Friday is important, therefore Thursday is the best day for Tsiknopempti. Tsiknopempti is celebrated 11 days before Clean Monday ((or Ash Monday).