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Saint Agatha, the origins of the festival

2024-01-14 10:20


Monuments, Articles, catania, santagata, wsantagata, 5 February,

Saint Agatha, the origins of the festival

The celebrations in honor of Agata. Certainly, the citizens began to join spontaneously upon the return of the relics from Constantinople


It is difficult to establish the year in which the celebrations in honor of Agata began but, certainly, the citizens began to gather spontaneously upon the return of the relics from Constantinople in 1126. Initially the celebrations took place inside the cathedral. The construction of the vara and the fercolo dates back to 1376, the year in which it is believed the tradition of the festival began with the procession with the veil of the saint along the street. The fercolo as we know it today, in silver on a wooden frame, dates back to 1946 after the previous one was seriously damaged during the bombing of 17 April 1943.

Frightened by the earthquake and the popular uprising, Quinziano, after having ordered the torture to be stopped and Agata accompanied to prison, escapes from a secondary door of the Praetorium. The young woman, taken in agony to her cell, died on 5 February 251 while Quinziano, directed towards the house of his family with the aim of arresting them and seizing their assets, was thrown off his horse by the runaway horses while crossing the Simeto river, dying by drowning.

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