Sant Jordi in Barcelona
If there's a nice day to be in Barcelona, this is the day of Sant Jordi, on April 23.
That day the city turns into a party and millions of people go out to the streets looking for, among other things, a rose and a book. Why a rose and a book? Here we explain you why this day is so special for the Catalans:
In the recent decades the sale of books with signatures of the authors and a discount to the sale price is promoted as the April 23 is officially the day of the book, day that Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare died. At the end of the day, it is estimated that about four million roses and 800,000 books are purchased.
The tradition of men giving a rose to the woman goes back probably to the fifteenth century. Some versions match this with the roses Fair taking place in Barcelona during those summers. What is certain is that women who attended the April 23 Mass celebrated in the chapel of Sant Jordi in the Palace of the Generalitat de Catalunya were given a rose. The red rose (symbolizing passion) must be accompanied by the senyera (flag - a symbol of Catalonia) and an ear of corn (symbol of fertility).
So if you are in Barcelona on April 23, do not forget walking through the center of the city (especially for Las Ramblas), then you will feel in live this celebration of culture, tradition and romance of Sant Jordi, patron saint of Barcelona.
SAINT GEORGE'S DAY LEGEND
"It is said that a terrible dragon caused terror in the surroundings of the town of Montblanc, and with its poisoned air puffs, he produced the death of all who breathed them. Concerned about the situation, the villagers thought of feeding the dragon every day with a human person to try to calm him, and decided to submit it to draw. For a while they did and the beast calmed down.
But one day the fate made the king's daughter be chosen to be devoured. The young princess was loved by all and although they offered to be changed for her, the king did not permit this and that's how the princess went to meet the dragon. When she was heading to the monster, a young gentleman crossed her path, Sant Jordi, who had heard of her misfortune and was going to help her. The dragon and the knight fought until Sant Jordi wounded and killed the dragon with a spear. From the blood that flowed from the wound a rosebush with the redder roses the princess had ever seen grew, and the knight cut off one of them and handed it to the princess”