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Bari: Festival of Saint Nicholas

The month of May has marked one of the most famous religious festivals in southern Italy, that of San Nicola at Bari.
San Nicola (or Saint Nicholas) is one of the most popular saints in the Christian faith, and the current representation of him in red dress with a white border comes from Clement C.

Moore’s 1821 poem “A Visit from St.
Described as a happy and jolly man, his spirit is that of the mythical figure of Santa Claus or Father Christmas.
In Russian orthodox churches, St.
Nicholas is often the third icon appearing together with depictions of Christ and the Madonna and child.

The remains of the saint were held in the Turkish city of Myra until it fell under Muslim rule.
Bari and Venezia, at the time rivals in the Adriatic, entered in competition with each other for the race to the East to recover the remains.
On the 9th of May, 1087, a contingent of three ships from Bari left for Myra and so became patrons of Saint Nicholas’ remains.
In occasion of the 2008 festival of Saint Nicholas, we can read from the Espresso:“Russian pilgrims have been in Bari for some days now, both for a religious purpose and a lovely holiday.

According to reports, this week is set to host 5,000 visitors.
Some pilgrims will probably stay in convents given the scarse hotel accommodation available.
At the Hotel Palace, the Leon d’Oro, the Hotel Victor and Villa Romanazzi, 10-20 percent of guests are said to be Russian.
At the beginning of the festival in May, 3,000 brochures in Russian on the city of Bari were requested, distributed between tour operators, the Basilica and the Cathedral.
”Photo : Repubblica Bari

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