IL BLOG E' DEDICATO A FRANCESCO PENTASUGLIA, MAESTRO NELL'ARTE DELLA CARTAPESTA, NEL CENTENARIO DELLA SUA NASCITA. This blog is dedicated to Francesco Pentasuglia, on the occasion of the centenary of his birth.

mercoledì, marzo 07, 2007

July 2: The festival

In Matera, on July 2, the villagers give thanks to 'Madonna della Bruna'. This festival, which has been held for over 600 years, also has its origins in a legend which tells of a beautiful, impoverished woman who asked a peasant, travelling by horse cart, for a lift into town. The peasant agreed, and at the entrance to the village the woman revealed herself to be the Madonna (Holy Virgin) and asked the peasant to deliver a message to the bishop of the city. The bishop, accompanied by a band of believers, then set out to greet the Madonna. Once they reached the place where she had been, they found only a statue on a Triumphal Carriage. The bishop ordered that the carriage should be taken to the cathedral, but the soldiers of the city, in the meantime, had been told to sequester it. The citizens then decided to destroy it in order for each of them to remain in possession of a part of it. The celebration of this legend begins at dawn with a procession of shepherds. After the procession of the Triumphal Carriage, escorted by knights, the festival culminates when the people destroys the Carriage itself at night. The destruction of the Carriage represents the citizens' hope for a prosperous harvest. Anyone who is able to take a piece of the Carriage away with him is considered to be lucky in the coming year.

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