Tag Archives: Holidays

Come Celebrate the Dark Ages! [Video]

Have you ever wondered what Medieval life was like, or wished you could live back then? Well you can — sort of! By attending one of Italy’s Medieval festivals, from April through October.  A special time to experience the Middle Ages at its best!

Italy abounds with Medieval towns, castles, and moats, making the perfect backdrop for its Medieval festivals. Replete with knights in sporting events, pageants, and lords and ladies dancing and feasting!  Continue reading Come Celebrate the Dark Ages! [Video]

The April Fools’ Spaghetti Hoax [Video]

April Fools’ Day in Italy is called Pesce d’Aprile, or April Fool Fish. It literally translates as April’s Fish, and stems from a school children’s custom of sticking a paper fish on the back of a school mate. As he or she is the only one who doesn’t know about the fish, that person then becomes the April Fish, or fool.  Continue reading The April Fools’ Spaghetti Hoax [Video]

The Italian Tooth Mouse

I like odd holidays. Like Tooth Fairy Day on February 28th! Although here in Italy, we’d have to call it Tooth Topolino Day, in honor of Italy’s very own tooth mouse!

No one seems to know the origin of this holiday or even why it started. But I think probably it all began in Spain, with Pérez Mouse, who worked for the king. Back when the king sold all his baby teeth to Pérez.  Continue reading The Italian Tooth Mouse

Italy’s Carnival: A Venetian Tradition

Carnival starts today, which is a big celebration in our little town, with its historic tradition of a parade and a masked public street party. But no Italian carnival celebration more is famous than the one in Venice.

The word carnival literally means either farewell to meat or farewell to the flesh. The concept is, that mask firmly in place, a person is free to do whatever they want. And putting on the carnival mask, really is like leaving your own flesh behind, to take up another identity.  Continue reading Italy’s Carnival: A Venetian Tradition

Groundhog Day in Italy

Many people on Groundhog Day (February 2) wait for groundhogs to emerge from their holes. For according to Anglo-Saxon folklore, if the groundhog sees its shadow, we’re sure to have six more weeks of winter. And of course, he can only see his shadow on sunny days, so a bright, sunny day foretells more winter. A cloudy day and no shadow supposedly means spring is on the way.  Continue reading Groundhog Day in Italy

It’s Summertime in Italy!

Roman Summer, that is! Otherwise known as Saint Martin’s Summer. According to legend, one cold and windy November 11th the saint, warmly wrapped in his mantle, met a ragged beggar freezing in the rain. Moved by compassion he divided his ample wrap, and giving half to the poor man, continued on his way.

Wind and rain soon subsided, until it became so warm that he removed the cape altogether. Folklore adds that God sent the unseasonable warm spell, which continues to this day, to reward Martin for his kindness.  Continue reading It’s Summertime in Italy!

Ready for Autunno?

Crackly leaves underfoot. Whiffs of wood smoke wafting on the air. Pumpkins and apples. Chestnuts roasting. There’s a cozy feeling to Autumn, isn’t there? And these are just a few of the things you can expect to find in an Italian autumn. And maybe you’ll even be lucky enough to catch some grape harvesting or olive picking. Two special events of an Italian autumn! Learn more about olive harvest with my post Autumn in ItalyContinue reading Ready for Autunno?