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The Holy Week in Iglesias

March 26th to 31st, 2024. One of the most famous Holy Week Easter rituals in Sardinia.

Settmana Santa a Iglesias, Sardegna
26 Mar 2024 - 31 Mar 2024 Sardinia -Iglesias (South Sardinia)  Folklore-Traditions | Religious celebrations

During the Holy Week – from Holy Tuesday to Easter Sunday – big processions stage the Passion and the Death of Christ in the city of Iglesias, which in Spanish indeed means “churches”.

The religious event, organized by the Brotherhood of Santo Monte, dates back to the end of 1600 during the Spanish domination. Many inhabitants participate and the days before it is possible to feel a particular atmosphere in the city waiting for the Holy Week’s processions and especially for Good Friday’s one.

On Holy Tuesday the procession of the Mysteries takes place with 7 wooden sculptures representing the Passion of Christ. The first mystery depicts Jesus praying in the Garden of Olives; followed by the Capture, the Flagellation, the Ecce Homo, the Calvary, the Crucifixion and the Virgin of Sorrows.

On Holy Wednesday the olive branches and ornamental flowers are blessed and distributed to the faithful in the Church of San Michele

On Holy Thursday evening there is the second procession: the streets are full of young people and children with the penitential custom of the “Babollotti”, the dress of the old disciplined men. The brothers of Santo Monte are dressed as “Germano” (Spanish word for brother) with a white dress and decorated with black ribbons and the hood called “Sa Visiera” that hides their face during the procession as a sign of humility. The melody of typical Sardinian instruments “Matraccas”, “Matracconi”, and drums go along with the procession.
The main character is the Lady of Sorrows searching for his son Jesus at the churches of the historic centre.

On Friday morning there is the Procession of Monte: the historical district of “Sa Costera” stages Jesus ascent to the Calvary always with the melody of matraccas and drums and the presence of the Germani. The children carry a small wooden cross, as a sign of penitence.
In the evening, there is the procession of Descenso in a sumptuous and royal style where the Funeral of Jesus is represented. This is the most awaited and touching day. In the procession there are two flags: “Is Vexillas” that goes before the statues of Saint John and Virgin Mary, two children with gold decorations customs, and “Is Varionis” which represent the nobles Giuseppe D’Arimatea and Nicodemo, with two servants. Finally the parade is closed by a big cross brought by the penitents on their shoulder.

Sunday, the day of Easter a big celebration for the gathering (S’Incontru) between the statues of the Virgin Mary and the Resurrected Christ in Sella Square.

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source photo: Iglesias


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