On Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of Passion Week, the Parisians go in procession to Long-champs, near the Bois de Boulogne. This procession is made by private carriages and hired cabs, and is formed by all the smartly-dressed men and women who wish to display the spring fashions. The origin of the custom is this: There was once a famous nunnery at Long-champs, noted for its singing. In Passion Week all who could went to hear these religious women sing the Ténèbres; the custom grew into a fashion, and though the house no longer exists, the procession is as fashionable as ever.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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