St. John's Night

Mysteries and traditions on early summer's night.

June 23, 2020

Some times ago ... all the children knew the meaning of the popular saying "San Giovanni shows the tricks". At its origin is the official linear measurements engraved on the left column of the baptistery: often a little shorter than those used by fabric sellers! The measure of the ancient Reggio Emilia arms is also found in Piazza Fontanesi, on the floor at the intersection with Via San Carlo.

St. John's Day (June 23) has always been considered a special day ... almost a "summer Christmas" in which popular and spiritual beliefs were mixed in a unique party. Especially in country towns, they spent the night outdoors eating and dancing, to take the famous "dew of St. John" (in dialect guàsa) which was believed to be blessed because it was renewing and vivifying.  Everywhere, medicinal herbs were gathered, such as St. John's herb, the eyes were soaked with dew, with the preparation of the traditional dinner with tortelli.

Document Actions