The feast of Saint Mark and the bocolo

The feast of Saint Mark and the bocolo

On 25 April in Venice people celebrate not only the Liberation Day, but also the Feast of Saint Mark.

The feast of Saint Mark appears during the serenissima Republic of Venice in the form of a great procession: the main religious and civil authorities of the city used to get together in the square of the same name in order to commemorate the anniversary of the evangelist Mark’s death, whose work in life allowed him to achieve the title of patron saint of the lagoon city.

On the same day in Venice there is the centenary tradition of the bocolo, According to the costume, men have to give a red rose bud (in the Venetian dialect “bocolo”) to their lovers as a sign of love. The gesture derives from the tragic legend of the commoner Tancredi, who went to war in order to gain glory so that he could propose to Mary, also called Vulcana, who was the Duke’s daughter. The lover didn’t return from war and his death was announced to Vulcana, who was given a rose: they told her that Tancredi had fallen on a rosebush, where he picked a rose up for her. The day after, during the feast of Saint Mark, the young woman was found death with the flower on her chest.

To know more about the Venetian tradition, come to Ristorante Centrale.


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