In popular folklore, Befana visits all the children of Italy on the eve of the Feast of the Epiphany to fill their socks with candy and presents if they are good, or a lump of coal or dark candy if they are bad. … She is often smiling and carries a bag or hamper filled with candy, gifts, or both.
How do you celebrate La Befana?
The arrival of la Befana is celebrated with traditional Italian foods such as panettone and marks the end of the long and festive holiday season in Italy. In honor of the Three Wise Men, Italians go to church and enjoy spending the day with family.
How does Italy celebrate La Befana?
The legend of La Befana. On January 5th throughout Italy, excited children prepare for a late-night visit from La Befana by hanging up socks to be filled with small delights. … While the ancient goddess connection is probably accurate, Befana has been transformed through the ages from her likely ancient Roman origins.
Which city has the biggest celebration for Befana?
One particularly popular celebration is the National Befana Festival that occurs each year in the Marche city of Urbania, thought to be the official home of La Befana, where upwards of 50,000 attendees watch parades and fireworks and witness La Befana “fly” down the town’s main bell tower.
Why do they burn La Befana?
The feast of this fairy-tale old lady, so much beloved and feared by Italian children, takes origin from the “old lady” which was burned in the squares to celebrate the end of the year, a symbol of time cycles always ending and beginning again.
What are common traditions in Italy?
Here are eight for your list:
- Epiphany and La Befana. Throughout Florence, it is tradition for an old woman to deliver gifts to children on Epiphany Eve. …
- Carnevale. …
- Florentine New Year. …
- Scoppio del Carro. …
- Patron Saint Feast Day. …
- Notte Bianca. …
- Festa della Rificolana. …
- Republic Day.
Why is La Befana important in Italy?
The witch has been in the Italian tradition at least since the eighth century, as part of the Epiphany. In Italy, the Epiphany marks the official end of the Christmas season, commemorating the day when the three Wise Men arrived at the manger bearing gifts.
What is Santa Claus called in Italy?
The Story of Befana, The Italian Santa Claus.
Is there Santa Claus in Italy?
Babbo Natale – Italy’s Christmas Santa Claus Tradition
Babbo Natale, Italy’s version of Santa Claus, is becoming more popular and gift giving on Christmas day is becoming more common. La Befana, the old woman who delivers gifts on Epiphany, January 6 is still the more popular Italian Christmas figure.
What Befana meaning?
In Italian folklore, Befana (pronounced [beˈfaːna]) is an old woman who delivers gifts to children throughout Italy on Epiphany Eve (the night of January 5) in a similar way to St. Nicholas or Santa Claus. A popular belief is that her name derives from the Feast of Epiphany (Italian: Festa dell’Epifania).
What is Ferragosto Italy?
Ferragosto is a public holiday celebrated on 15 August in all of Italy. … By metonymy, it is also the summer vacation period around mid-August, which may be a long weekend (ponte di ferragosto) or most of August.
Do you say happy La Befana?
The presence of “La Befana” adds a special twist – but a word to the wise. “La Befana” is usually portrayed as an ugly-looking old witch, so a gentleman should never wish Happy Befana Day to a woman. That would get you an angry look if you are lucky, and a threat to be fed coal if not.
What is Festa della Repubblica in Italy?
Festa della Repubblica ([ˈfɛsta della reˈpubblika]; English: Republic Day) is the Italian National Day and Republic Day, which is celebrated on 2 June each year, with the main celebration taking place in Rome.
What is the most interesting fact about Italy?
Italy has a low birth rate and the oldest population in Europe. Italy has one of the world’s oldest populations, with 23% of the population aged over 65 years, and a median age of around 45 years. The country also has one of the lowest birth rates in the western world.
Why do Italians say l Epifania tutte le Feste Porta Via?
The word has Greek origins and means “manifestation“ of the divinity. The Epiphany is the last festivity of Christmas time. For this very reason, we usually say „L’Epifania Tutte le feste si porta via“. Literally, Epiphany takes all the festivities away.