Shrove Tuesday (also called as Pancake Tuesday) is a Tuesday often in February or maybe March, depending on the date of Easter Sunday. Easter Sunday is calculated as the first Sunday after the first full moon after 21 March. Shrove Tuesday is observed by many Christians. For Roman Catholics it is the day before a period of penance and fasting so consequently Shrove Tuesday was traditionally a day to use up food and pancake making was popular. “Mardi Gras” is French for “Fat Tuesday“, referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, which begins on Ash Wednesday. Lent meant abstaining from eggs and all dairy products, so all of these had to be used up before Ash Wednesday and hence pancakes were made on Shrove Tuesday.
Shrove as it is often called was a very common day for people to get married and a browse at Catholic Marriage Registers will show this. We can see examples of over 20 marriages taking place in any one Parish on that day. Also a browse through our Remembrance Garden on BMDnotices.com will show that many of the marriage dates for Ireland are on Shrove Tuesday or perhaps the previous day.