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Festa di San Marco


Today (April 25) is San Marco's feast day and for centuries, this day was celebrated by Venetians with grand processions and pageantry in honor of St. Mark. It's still celebrated today, at least in the Basilica, where the Patriarch celebrated Mass at 10:30 this morning in honor of St. Mark the Evangelist and Patron Saint of Venice.

I don't know if there are still any other festivities - I checked the Piazza San Marco webcam this morning, and it looked like a normal rainy spring day in Venice. Checked it again later, and the sun was out, the orchestras were playing, and the scaffolding around the campanile looked to be growing.

April 25 is also the Festa del Bocolo (Festival of the Blooming Rose) where it's traditional for Venetian men to give a red rose to all the women they love. That could get expensive for some guys! There are a couple of legends associated with this tradition retold (and charmingly translated) on Venice Explorer.

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Comments (7)


Now I remember! Last year we departed Venice on April 25th. The rose tradition was definitely still being practiced by many.

For the week or more leading up to this day, there were special venetian flags flying from the vaporetto stops and then a parade of boats on the Grand Canal on the previous Saturday.

I think they were planning for another boat parade to San Marco on the 25th but we left early in the morning.

Cubbies, thanks for the eye witness report - how cool! I'm glad to learn that they still do celebrate it - I'd love to be there for it someday.

Cool, I like traditions and special celebrations . . . I enjoyed learning about both in this entry.

Thanks Annie!

How did I miss this on your blog? I really love that photo!! I also enjoyed reading this post. Have you ever read the book - Stravaganza: City of Masks? I would highly recommend it if you have not.

Girasoli, no I haven't read that book. I'll check it out - thanks!


Annie, I love this photo!

And I must admit, I read and loved all 3 of the Stravaganza books. They're really aimed at young adults, but they're very imaginative and fun reads.

Thanks everyone! The photo is a late 19th/early 20th century colorized photo - I don't know for sure if it was taken on Festa di San Marco, but it's definitely some kind of procession from the Basilica so it's close enough!

And thanks for the book recs - I'm always looking for good new Venice material.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 25, 2008 12:43 PM.

The previous post in this blog was Sant' Agnese.

The next post in this blog is Photo Hunt: Signs! .

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