The Nativity scene at the Basilica of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei FrariLocal Traditions
The Nativity scene at the Basilica of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari
If you are in Venice during the Christmas season, we suggest you go and see the churches of Venice to see the nativity scenes erected by the various parishes... One of the most beautiful and famous is certainly that of the basilica dei Frari, in the San Polo district.
For many years now, the Franciscan friars who mastermind it, have created a nativity scene that captures the visitor's attention towards the cave where Mary and Joseph lovingly cradle the Child. Alongside, there are a donkey and an ox, the inevitable characters of every crib, and the Three Kings, who arrive on 6 January. Around the cave you can admire the evocative scenes of everyday life: a potter working the clay, a woman spinning the wool on the distaff, there are those who are enjoying a drink or looking after the flocks and carrying baskets...
This is a truly realistic crib because many of the characters that compose it, such as the cobbler and the potter, are moved by mechanical devices. Also, the highly evident attention to detail, noticeable for instance in the proportions of the houses and shops located in the crib and the real grass on the lawn where the Nativity is represented, contribute to creating a truly evocative setting.
Finally, the light of the crib in the Church dei Frari varies in accordance with the alternation between night and day of the scenes... A display you should not miss!
In addition to Venice, there are other cities and towns in our region where cribs of all kinds are erected: discover with us the best cribs in Veneto and decide which ones to visit during the Christmas holidays!
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