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).
Who delivers gifts on Christmas Eve in Italy?
And the legend continues that every Epiphany Eve, the old, tattered and soot-covered Befana flies around the world on a broomstick and comes down chimneys to deliver candy and presents to children who have been good during the year.
How does Babbo Natale deliver gifts?
Making her journey on January 5th, she rides atop a broom and climbs down the chimney of homes to deliver presents to the children inside. Well behaved children find colourful candies in their stockings, while the misbehaved ones find coal – but don’t worry, it’s candy coal (edible and sweet!)
Which country does a witch deliver Christmas presents?
Befana – an Italian witch delivering presents
Traditionally, in popular folklore Befana visits all the children to fill their socks with candy and presents if they are good, while the bad children get a lump of coal, garlic or onion.
Who are the gift givers in Italy?
La Befana is the traditional “gift giver” of Italy and is often called the “gift giver” more than “La Befana.” This Italian character is certainly celebrated as Santa is here in the US, and children flock to her when she is portrayed by an individual throughout the country.
What is the Italian tradition for Christmas?
Although nowadays many children receive presents from Father Christmas on Christmas Eve, a uniquely Italian tradition is that of ‘La Befana’, the old woman who brings gifts on Epiphany Eve. Legend has it the Three Wise Men came to her house and invited her to join their search for Christ.
What do Italy call Santa?
The Story of Befana, The Italian Santa Claus.
Is Babbo Natale a girl or boy?
Babbo Natale – Italy’s Christmas Santa Claus Tradition
La Befana, the old woman who delivers gifts on Epiphany, January 6 is still the more popular Italian Christmas figure. Babbo Natale, or Father Christmas is gaining popularity in Italy.
How does Italy say Merry Christmas?
“Merry Christmas” in Italian is Buon Natale. Buone feste e tanti auguri means Happy Holidays and best wishes!
Is Kris Kringle Santa Claus?
Santa Claus—otherwise known as Saint Nicholas or Kris Kringle—has a long history steeped in Christmas traditions.
How old is Santa Claus?
Santa is 1,750 years old!
What culture has a Christmas witch?
Why Iceland’s Christmas Witch Is Much Cooler (and Scarier) Than Krampus | Arts & Culture | Smithsonian Magazine.
What is considered rude in Italy?
And please, do not burp or fart in public, it is considered extremely rude. Also, loud swearing and drinking alcohol from a bottle while walking the street, is frowned upon. Most Italians like some alcohol, but usually avoid to get drunk. … Italians expect to be respected and will respect you.
What is the main day for gift giving in Italy?
Italian Christmas Traditions
Although Babo Natale (Father Christmas) and giving presents on Christmas are becoming more common, the main day for gift giving is the Epiphany, the twelfth day of Christmas when the three wise men gave Baby Jesus their gifts.
Does Santa bring gifts in Italy?
Epiphany is also important in Italy. … In parts of northern Italy, the Three Kings might bring you present rather than Befana. On Christmas day ‘Babbo Natale’ (Santa Claus) might bring them some small gifts, but the main day for present giving is on Epiphany.