Components of an Italian Christmas!

Christmas Market in Bolzano/Bozen (South Tyrol)

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Christmas Market in Bolzano/Bozen (South Tyrol)

 

Although Italians are spread all over the globe and some traditions have changed over time here are the top four Italian traditions that are still practiced in all four corners of the world.

1.The Befana

 

The Befana is a good witch who comes January sixth also known as the eve of the Epiphany. She fills up the stockings with sweat treats like mandarines, nuts, cookies, candies etc.. but if you were a bad kid unfortunately you get coal.

2. Meatless Christmas Eve

 

On Christmas Eve for Italians it is an absolute faux pas to eat meat; therefore, Italians will fill their bellies with fish till their hearts content.  Some families can prepare up to thirteen plates of fish for this special holiday. They do this because the Catholic church refrains them from eating meat on Friday and especially on Christmas Eve.

3. Prolonged Christmas

 

Usually Christmas starts and ends on December twenty-fifth but not for Italians. Christmas celebrations starts December eight which is the Feast day of the Immaculate Conception and lasts all the way to January sixth which is also known as the Epiphany which is the twelfth day of Christmas. Many will spend this month reuniting  with friends and family they have not seen in awhile.

4. Midnight Mass

 

Most Italians who still practise their faith do so by attending a midnight mass on Christmas Eve. It usually begins around midnight and involves the story of Jesus being born.

Hope you get the opportunity to spend a boisterous Italian Christmas in your lifetime!

                                               BUON NATALE!