feast

(redirected from feasts eyes on)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Idioms.

feast

feast, commemorative banquet symbolizing communal unity. Generally associated with primitive rituals and later with religious practices, feasts may also commemorate such events as births, marriages, harvests, and deaths. The principal Christian feasts of the Western Church are Easter, Pentecost, Epiphany, and Christmas. The greater number of feasts (excluding Sunday, the weekly feast) fall on the same day of the month each year (e.g., Christmas) and constitute the temporal cycle. Some of the more important liturgical observances are movable (e.g., Easter) and are part of the sanctoral system. Among the Jews the chief feasts are Rosh ha-Shanah, the Feast of Tabernacles, Purim, Passover, Hanukkah, and Shavuot. In the Muslim world the Islamic feasts vary according to country and locale, although there are several feast days of universal importance. The most widely celebrated are the little and great feasts following the fast of Ramadan and the feast commemorating the birth of Muhammad. In Buddhist countries festive celebrations are usually associated with the birthday of Buddha, his attainment of Nirvana, or enlightenment, and his death. In India there are many national and regional Hindu feasts. One of the most important is the feast of Holi. See also vigil and fasting.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2022, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

Maidyarem (Maidhyairya; Mid-Year or Winter Feast)

December-January, May, June; 16th-20th days of Dae, the 10th Zoroastrian month
Maidyarem is the fifth of the six great seasonal feasts, known as gahambars, of the Zoroastrian religion. It was traditionally celebrated at a point in the agricultural year when, due to extreme cold, all work came to a halt. The name comes from the word airya, which means "rest."
The six gahambars were typically joyous festivals that included such activities as special rituals and prayers, and the sharing of food. Although they lasted five days, the fifth day was the only one spent in actual celebration; the other four were for preparation and anticipation of the day's feasting, when families or neighborhoods would get together. These seasonal feasts were designed to give those who worked from dawn to dusk on farms a respite from their labors. Today, with so many Zoroastrians living in urban areas, the importance of the gahambars has diminished.
The Zoroastrian calendar has 12 months of 30 days each, plus five extra days at the end of the year. Because of discrepancies in the calendars used by widely separated Zoroastrian communities around the world, there are now three different calendars in use, and Maidyarem can fall either in December-January, May, or June according to the Gregorian calendar.
There are only about 100,000 followers of Zoroastrianism today, and most of them live in northwestern India or Iran. Smaller communities exist in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Canada, the U.S., England, and Australia.
SOURCES:
RelHolCal-2004, p. 69
Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World Dictionary, Fourth Edition. © 2010 by Omnigraphics, Inc.

Feast

See also Epicureanism.
Barmecide feast
a sham banquet, with empty plates, given to a beggar by wealthy Bagdad nobleman. [Arab. Lit.: Arabian Nights, “The Barmecide’s Feast”]
Belshazzar’s Feast
lavish banquet, with vessels stolen from Jerusalem temple. [O.T.: Daniel, 5]
Camacho’s wedding
lavish feast prepared in vain, as Camacho’s fiancée runs off with her love just before the ceremony. [Span. Lit.: Cervantes Don Quixote]
Hanukkah
(Feast of Lights or Feast of Dedication) Jewish festival lasting eight days; abundance of food is characteristic. [Judaism: NCE, 1190]
Lucullan feast
a lavish banquet; after Lucullus, roman general and gourmet. [Rom. Hist.: Espy, 236]
Prospero’s banquet
shown to the hungry castaways, then disappears. [Br. Drama: Shakespeare The Tempest]
Thanksgiving
national holiday with luxurious dinner as chief ritual. [Am. Pop. Culture: Misc.]
Thyestean banquet
at which Atreus served his brother Thyestes’ sons to him as main course. [Gk. Myth.: Brewer Dictionary, 1081]
Trimalchio’s Feast
lavishly huge banquet given by wealthy vulgarian. [Rom. Lit.: Satyricon]
Zeus
disguised as Amphitryon, gives a banquet at the latter’s house. [Gk. Myth.: Benét, 32]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.