Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.

Shrove Tide

Shrove-Tide is the name given in England to the time immediately preceding Lent, and is generally applied only to the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. The name is derived from the old custom of going to confession, or being shriven, on that day, which was regarded as a fast. Hence the custom of eating pancakes on Shrove Tuesday; but in modern times carnival festivities have ousted the fast. In Germany the day is called Fast Nacht, and in France Mardi Gras.