The winter time of the holiday calendar has always been marked by the presence of fire. A flame that warms bodies and hearts, a fire that cooks food consumed together, light that illuminates ancient rituals. Among the celebrations still alive in Abruzzo, the feast of St. Anthony Abbott, on January 17, exalts its flamboyant presence and elects it as...

In addition to being the most important and representative Christmas tradition, the crib is also the oldest: the first nativity scene was made by St. Francis and his friars on the night of 24th and 25th December 1223 in the mountains of Greccio, near Rieti in the Lazio region. The first crib is actually a mass exceptionally celebrated in a cave rat...

Gubbio is a fine small medieval town, situated in the region of Umbria, a region located in the center of Italy. It is in Gubbio that San Francis encountered and tamed the famous wolf. Positioned at a height of approximately 500 meters above sea level, Gubbio is located at the base of Mount Ingino, a mountain about 900 meters high.

People often say that Halloween is completely foreign to Italian culture and folk traditions. This is both true and false: rites, traditions, legends scattered throughout the peninsula cover the night of All Saints' Day, which coincides with that of Halloween... but it is much older.

The Palio della Rocca is a historical re-enactment founded in 1987 in the municipality of Serra Sant'Abbondio in the Marche region. The event covers many cultural, tourist, religious and social meanings. The central point is the challenge that takes place on the second Sunday of September between the 3 ancient villages and 3 ancient castles, which...

The Quintana Horse Race is a competition among six knights, each one representing a local district. During the race, the knight must use a spear and ride a horse on a 8 shape route to hit the “moro” in the middle. Each assault corresponds to a certain score. The knight has to make 3 assaults in a row for each turn (named “tornata”). There are 3 tur...

Every year on July 14 the Legend of Innamorata is celebrated in Capoliveri, in the Elba Island, Tuscany. It is said that the legend of Innamorata originated back in 1534, when the coasts of Elba Island were sacked by the pirate Barbarossa and his Saracen crew. The legend tells about two young lovers, Lorenzo and Maria, whose love was, however, hind...

Corpus Domini, also known as Corpus Christi, is a Catholic feast day. It honors the Eucharist, and as such it does not commemorate a particular event in Jesus's life. Many places in Lazio celebrate the days around this festival with infiorata, or flower displays.

The popular legend says that a local plague in 1436 brought death and desolation among men and animals in town. The desperate people asked grace to Saint Vittore, with the promise of organizing a run of the slower animals, the oxen, as a sign of joy and gratitude. The Holy man heard these prayers and the plague ceased. The earliest historical docum...

A huge explosion detonated on April 16, Easter Sunday, in front of the magnificent green and white-marbled neogothic church in Florence's centro storico. Instead of running in fear from a terrorist's bomb, though, thousands of spectators will cheer the noise and smoke, for they will be witnesses to the annual Scoppio del Carro—explosion of the cart...