|What is a giant ?|
Giants represent whole regions, cities, and communities.
Carried giants can be traced back to 18th century Portugal. Originally, Giants appeared in Western Europe to add color and educational value to communal and religious processions. From the 15th century onward, these giant figures were used to illustrate scenes from the bible, tales from the Golden Legend, and epic poems. With time, the Giants changed in meaning and came to represent regions, cities, and neighborhoods. Adapted to ideas of different eras, Giants moved away from processions to become increasingly profane figures used in carnivals, village fetes, and religious festivals, too.
In Europe, where they have existed for over seven centuries, Giants took part in many popular festivals all year long, as well as parades and church celebrations. Giants were not limited to their own countries and traveled abroad, revealing their wide-ranging styles and sometimes marrying into other European cultures. They were also used to celebrate births, baptisms, and wedding anniversaries, retaining their ties to traditions, collective memory, and community identity.
Today, giants meet regularly at international festivals and parades offering innovative insights to their own culture and history. They weigh more than 45 kg (100 lbs.) and are usually carried on a person's back.
In Québec City, more than a dozen Giants have been created since 2002. The most imposing of them being Samuel de Champlain, the city’s founder; you’ll find him at the heart of the celebration!