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This celebration is recognized as one of the world's most extravagant and colorful pre-Lenten celebrations. The participating groups, called "bands," plan their "mas" (short for "masquerade") costumes.

She attracts men and then turns them into hogs, after which they fall down a cliff.Emancipation Day (August 1) and Independence Day (August 31) are secular holidays marking important dates in the nation's history.Trinidad and Tobago's most important festival is its Carnival.A little over 40 percent of Trinidad and Tobago's 1.3 million people are black, another 40 percent are of Asian Indian descent, about 15 percent are of mixed descent, and smaller numbers are Chinese or European. However, the common language of the great majority of residents is an English-derived Creole dialect that contains elements of African and other languages.Hindi and Urdu are spoken by segments of the Indian population. In Trinidadian Creole, the plural form of "you" is allyu, and the French-English ah wee means "ours." French expressions such as il fait chaud (literally, "it makes hot") and il y a (literally, "it there has") are mirrored in the Trinidadian "it making hot" and "it have," which is used for "there is." Amerindian-derived words include the names of foods—cassava, balata, and roocoo—as well as place names, including Guayaguayare and Carapichaima.In the twentieth century, Trinidad's nationalistic hopes were symbolized by one revered leader, Eric Williams.In 1955, Williams founded the People's National Movement (PNM).There are also religious sects that combine Christianity with African religious beliefs and practices. It honors both Shango, the god of thunder and lightning, and Christian saints.Through dance and drumming, its priests, called mogbas, summon spirits known as orishas .By 1814, Tobago, which had changed hands several times, was also a British possession.In 1888 Tobago was joined with Trinidad as a colonial territory under the name Trinidad and Tobago.

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