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The celebration of Apokreo (carnival, the period before Lent) was of especial importance in Old Xanthi at the beginning of the 20th century, as we can see from surviving photographs. These were improvised carnivals that toured the streets, with much laughter, cries and joking, visiting the houses of friends and family. During this period there was also almost total participation in the carnival festivities organised by dance halls and clubs. The lack of space during Apokreo later obliged the organisers to arrange ad hoc areas in tobacco warehouses that were no longer in use. This was a purely urban carnival. The improvised fancy dress costumes were made from available materials lying around the house: old clothes, the leftovers of the belle époque, folk costumes, silver ?kioustekia? (pectoral ornaments) and talismans decorated with double-headed eagles, belts with silver buckles, cartridge belts and waistcoats with embroidery. They would utilise old caps, water pipes, walking sticks, old weapons, dusty like the panoply and chariots of Don Quixote and forgotten in neglected lofts in the house; in other words anything odd and unusual. Folk instruments were a necessity, especially the oud, guitars, bouzoukis and mandolins. Now and then a forgotten, useless kanonaki would be found. Even violins would appear, according to the social class of those wearing the costumes.