Easter in the Serenissima Republic of VeniceLocal Traditions
Easter in the Serenissima Republic of Venice
Easter is one of the most important celebrations for Christianity as it commemorates the Resurrection of Jesus but over the centuries, this festival has become more important by combining religion with traditions, tales and folklore.
This is true especially for Venice, as the city, during the long period of the Serenissima, had the opportunity to integrate cultures and religions from all over the world, taking on practices and traditions previously unknown, such as, for example, the use of the egg, which it inherited from the Eastern world. Indeed, the egg has always been considered the symbol of life and regeneration and therefore it reflects the Easter message of the victory of life over death. The egg thus became the main ingredient of many recipes typical of Easter lunch, such as the fragrant fugassa (focaccia) and tagliatelle! And it is from this centuries-long and rooted culinary tradition that the famous sayings No xè Pasqua sensa fugassa' (not Easter without focaccia) and Aleluia, aleluia le parpadele se desgarbuia! (Alleluia, alleluia pappardelle are becoming untangled!) originate.
But besides sweet dishes and profound sayings, during the Serenissima Republic Easter Sunday in St Mark’s Basilica was also an occasion for ceremonial grandeur and magnificence with decorations, sacred music and the unveiling of the Doge’s treasure and the wonderful Pala d'Oro. However, the most awaited moment not only by the very rich but also the whole population, was the andata of the Doge, that is the moment the Doge headed a procession, accompanied by all the members of the Signoria, to the church of St. Zaccaria, where he was welcomed by the abbess of the adjoining monastery and the nuns. Here the Doge attended mass presided by the Patriarch and participated in a banquet prepared by the nuns in the convent. Starting from the 9th century during the aforementioned celebration, the Doge received as a gift the Corno dogale made by the sisters. According to legend and chronicles, the traditional gift of the Corno dogale started with the abbess Agostina Morosini who offered it for the first time to Doge Pietro Tradonico (836-864).
The sun warms up, the lagoon shines and the days become brighter... Easter is one of the most beautiful times to visit Venice! Come and discover the most beautiful and interesting local traditions by choosing from our many proposals!
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