Feast of Saint Mark

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The Feast of Saint Mark commemorates Mark the Evangelist and takes place on April 25.

Local observances and customs[edit]


The 25th of April is national holiday throughout Italy, though not as Saint Mark's Day, but as anniversary of the liberation of Italy from the Nazi-Fascists in World War II (25 April 1945).


In Tresnuraghes, a small village in Sardinia (Italy), a traditional Sardinian feast is held. Local shepherd families in this predominantly pastoral community offer sheep and oversee cooking them in a gesture of thanks to Providence. Other families offer bread as thanksgiving or for favors desired. Hundreds of people, mostly from said village, but a large number of other people as well, eat and drink to satiation together.[1]


Saint Mark's Day (Italian: Festa di San Marco), also known as the rosebud festival (Venetian: festa del bocolo), is a festival in Venice held on 25 April celebrating Venice's patron saint, Saint Mark. On this day, men traditionally give a single rosebud to the women they love.[2][3][4]

According to legend, the tradition originated in the 8th century, when a man of low social standing is said to have fallen in love with a noblewoman from Venice. In order to win her father's approval, he became involved in a distant war. He was mortally wounded in battle, but managed to pluck a rose from a nearby rosebush for his loved one. A companion was entrusted with returning the blood-stained rose to his lover.[4][5][6]


In Lithuania, St. Mark is considered the guardian of earth and harvests. There was a ban on eating meat in order to have a good harvest. People avoided "touching the earth", i.e. no plowing or digging, to give the earth a rest before the upcoming hard work of planting and harvest.[7]


In Paraíso, Tabasco, Mexico, Saint Mark is celebrated the 25 April due to his patronage of that city.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Counihan, Carole. The Anthropology of Food and Body. Page 39.
  2. ^ Bing, Alison. "Venice & the Veneto", 2010.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-12-12. 
  4. ^ a b Touring Club Italiano. "Guida d'Italia, Venezia", 1985.
  5. ^ http://veniceblog.typepad.com/veniceblog/2004/04/the_legend_of_t.html
  6. ^ http://www.ombra.net/tradizione/festa-san-marco/index.php
  7. ^ Lithuanian Customs and Traditions