St. Antoni Abàt’s Eve
Music and Singing! Dancing! Eating! Bonfire! This is what the St. Antoni Abàt’s festival is all about and much more.
A festival that is is steeped in history, St. Antoni Abàt’s Eve has been celebrated in Mallorca for a long time, and is one event that is keenly anticipated after the New Year celebrations. Named after St. Antoni, the patron saint of farm animals, this festival attracts guests from all around the world and is held on the 16th of January before St. Antoni Abàt’s Day on the 17th of January each year.
Local to Mallorca, it is one of the most the colourful and vibrant festivals that kick starts the New Year. As one of the most traditional celebrations known across Mallorca, it attracts a lot of attention; as people from other parts of Spain travel not just to catch a glimpse of this festival, but to experience the glitz and glamour.
The 16th is when the day begins and with it comes the preparation for the bonfire, as firewood is collected. This is necessary to warm up the ‘’Revetlla’’ of St. Antoni on a cold January night, of course, it is equally important for the ‘’ximbombades’’. These are individual percussion hand drums as ximbomba players and singers carry the tune till late in the evening, serenading the visitors and locals alike for the festival.
The Dance with the Devil as it also called means that people have to wear colourful costumes and masks with long horns. These masks represent the inability of St. Antoni to resist the temptation from the devil. Musicians would also be dancing in the street, and would be accompanied by devils, which symbolise evil and human temptation.
They are usually joined by locals and tourists from all over the world as they eat, drink and gyrate to the sounds of the ximbombades. Clad in their colourful costumes, they move in a frenzied fashion, eating the traditional Sa Pobla meal; Espinegades, a pizza-like pastry with savoury toppings. This dance around the bonfire also serves as a reminder of St. Antoni’s restraint against temptation from the devil.
All these happen just before the main event which most people look forward to; the bonfire. The bonfire is the climax and the main event and ends the evening.
Fire spitters, fire jugglers, fireworks add to the fun fair of the celebration and the dancing is part of the spectacular events that takes place in the evening of St. Antoni Abàt’s Eve as people walk along the streets to usher in St. Antoni Abàt’s Day.
On the 17th of January, which is St. Antoni Abàt’s Day, the razzmatazz comes to an end and there is a blessing of animals held around the villages in Mallorca.
We recommend the celebration of San Antonio in the village of Sa Pobla!
At Kensington Pollensa, we take pride in understanding the locality and recognise selling property here means much more than a change of home. To be acquainted with the Mallorca lifestyle connotes pleasure, enjoyment, and a long lasting inner peace.
For more information about Mallorca and Pollensa properties please don’t hesitate to contact us at Rodemann & Wood, exclusive partner of Kensington Finest Properties International :
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