An Easter Party in Lauragais

Occitan Dances - Saint Felix de Lauragais is situated in the big region known in the history as Occitanie
Occitan Dances – Saint Felix de Lauragais is situated in the region known in the history as Occitanie

Each year on Easter Sunday, in the little, picturesque village of Saint Felix de Lauragais – some 40 km southeast of Toulouse – in the …Lauragais region of southwest France, takes place the “Cocagne” Festival.
The name “cocagne” literally designates hand made little balls of dried woad plant – called pastel in French – leaves which are used to produce a blue textile paint of a matchless shade. The use pastel, although known since antiquity, boomed during the period between the 13th and 16th centuries when it brought vast riches to Toulouse and its surrounding region.
The affluence created by the pastel related trades was such that in popular parlance the expression “Pays de Cocagne” – “Pastel Land” – came to describe a wonderland where everything abounds, and any wish for enrichment is granted.
The festival of “Cocagne” of Saint Felix de Lauragais celebrates however other types of wealth: the region’s historic and cultural ones.
Through costumes, dances, music and shows the residents of the village recreated during one day scenes from history of their community from Middle Ages to the modern times.
The festival also brings about one of the few opportunities to visit the village’s chateau – so tightly related to the Catharism history and now a private property – and its courtyard.
Here are some pictures from the 2017 edition of “Fête de la Cocagne”.
Occitan Dances in the court of the "Chateau"
Occitan Dances in the court of the chateau
The courtyard of Chateau St. Felix de Lauragais
The courtyard of Chateau St. Felix de Lauragais
Occitan orchestra
Occitan orchestra playing the courtyard of the chateau
Belle Epoque dances
Let’s the dance begin! (Belle Epoque dances)
Belle Epoque Dances
Belle Epoque Dances
Belle Epoque Dances
Belle Epoque Dances

Belle Epoque Costumes
Belle Epoque Costumes
Medieval Camp
Medieval Camp
French Revolution Costumes
French Revolution Costumes
St Felix de Lauragais chateau
St Felix de Lauragais chateau
Spectators in the courtyard of Saint Felix de Lauragais chateau
Spectators in the courtyard of Saint Felix de Lauragais chateau
Painting show inside of the chateau
Painting show inside of the chateau
Half-timbered house in Saint Felix de Lauragais
Half-timbered house in Saint Felix de Lauragais
Half-timbered house in Saint Felix de Lauragais
Half-timbered house in Saint Felix de Lauragais
Saint Felix de Lauragais church and commanderie
Saint Felix de Lauragais church and commanderie
Central square of Saint Felix de Lauragais
Central square of Saint Felix de Lauragais
Occitan pipers
Occitan pipers
Occitan accordionists
Occitan accordionists
Hunters playing the horn
Hunters blowing the horn
Medieval Costumes
Medieval Costumes
Renaissance costumes
Renaissance costumes
18th century costumes
18th century costumes
Occitan - local - traditional costumes
Occitan – local – traditional costumes
Belle Epoque costumes
Belle Epoque costumes
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