Rose Festival (Vila Franca), Our Lady
of Amparo (Cardielos), St. Anthony (Afife), St. Peter and St. Paul
(Serreleis), St. James (S. Tiago, Vila Nova de Anha), St. Michael, St.
Joseph and Our Lady of Sorrows (Perre), Our Lady Christina (Meadela),
St. Mary of the Snows (Barroselas), St. Martha (Portuzelo), Our Lady of
Grace (Carreço), Our Lady of Agony (Viana), St. Mamede (Areosa), St.
John of Arga (Caminha), Our Lady of Guadalupe (Castelo do Neiva), Our
Lady of Sorrows (New Fairs, Ponte de Lima)... From May to September, in
the great festivals of Minho, the litters and processions shine, the
brass bands and folk groups, the big-heads and giant puppets, the drums,
the concertinas and the competitive singers, but the real queens of the
holidays are the Stewards: Brides, Ladies and Peasants.
song intro traditional from GRUPO FOLCLÓRICO DE VIANA DO CASTELO
BRIDES, LADIES AND PEASANTS
FROM MINHO PROVINCE
BRIDES, LADIES AND
PEASANTS FROM MINHO PROVINCE (Viana do Castelo)slideshow
«So pretty is
sitting in the
neck of a maiden...»
Heart of Viana
TRADITIONAL JEWELRY MUSEUM
shall we go...»
Early in the
dawn come the first girls with their red suits (still there are yellow,
green and blue scarves), white crocheted socks and slippers, soca shoes
or black clogs or with cotton bouquets in various colors, vests with
front beads, with cords and colorful embroidery on the back, waist
pockets between the skirt and flowery apron, linen shirts with
cross stitching on the sleeves and shoulders, earrings Queen like,
between six to nine gold thread with crucifixes and medallions and a
braids scarf in the head and another by the shoulders: they are the
Sitting on stone benches we find several brides dressed
in black or dark blue, with a white tulle veil of embroidered on the
head, with votive candles, “palmitos” or branches of litter on hand, and
further ahead other single girls, with hearty golden pieces on the chest
and colorful scarves with flowers or cornucopias, skirts at the ankle
and decorated aprons with beads and glass beads (with wild motives or
crowns flanking the shield of Portugal or of different parishes), and
all bring by the hand the famous love scarves...
Later, many other girls with their Sunday gaudy party
suits, half ladies with a folded shawl by the arm, beautiful silk or
white/black lace umbrellas and superb family old gold pieces and, still,
the widows with their pity dark suits. In little time, hundreds of girls
and ladies with flashy costumes “Vianesa” (Viana do Castelo) style
gather, and soon roam the city streets to introduce themselves to the
people and to pay the usual greetings to the authorities.
The Brass Band Bingre Canelense Society ends with the
«Oh my someday love...»
The stewardship parade is a generous show to observe,
only comparable to the best paintings of the Creation.
«Antoninho ask your mother
for a pocket gold watch,
I’ll also ask mine
for a gold neck cord.»
Bambolina or pelican earrings, king
or queen earrings (of “chapola”, "parolos" or "mourning"), carrion or
loaves rings, noble flowery lacquers studded with diamonds, scapulars
and miraculous medals of saints (Our Lady of Conception and Our Lady of
Grace), hearts of Viana (baroque, swollen, filigree, flaming or double),
thin strands and braids, beaded necklaces with Christs or butterflies,
baroque crosses, made of Malta or metal cylinders, shackles and several
medallions, libras, “rodilhão” stars, custody...
In the Minho tradition, gold is a
symbol of beauty, recognition and protection. It was the way of the
ancients to put gold in the water tub of the first bath of the newborns,
wishing them a prosperous life. In married ladies, gold represents good
governance of the house, and in the unmarried girls it assures their
purity of the flesh, terminating all doubts or threats to their good
name. In any case, any gold placed below the navel is tacky.
BRIDES AND VOTIVE CANDLES
«The Girls of Viana
are as tough as wire,
there is no axe able to cut them
nor young lad that deceives them...»
(Vira das Palmas, popular folk song)
Brides are “fameless” ladies,
carrying their votive candles burning since dawn and so must they be
kept to the altar, in the solemn Mass in the Church of Our Lady of
Agony. The judgment of the people states that if any candle goes out, it
reveals the unchastely girls and therefore, that are not worthy of the
feast honors. In any case, with the same diligence they will keep their
husband and the wedding attire, which according to tradition must serve
them as a shroud.
«Here is my heart
And the key to open it,
I have no more to give you
Nor do you have more to ask of
Brides, ladies and lady peasants will
bear hearts of gold. Symbols of the city of Viana, the hearts are part
of the iconography of their traditional embroidery, and even the hidden
pockets between the skirt and the apron (on the right side in the lady
peasants and on the left in the brides case) are butterfly-shaped
(inverted hearts) in which are often embroidered the words "Viana" and
«So rare is not reading in them the words Viana and Amor», as
recorded the famous ethnographer Amadeu Costa.
BRIDES AND LADIES IN NEON
S. JOÃO D'ARGA
Procissão solene de S. João D'Arga, Caminha.
5'23'' Agosto 2015
| GRUPO ETNOGRÁFICO DA AREOSA S. Mamede, Areosa
30 AUG 2015 1'01''
Havemos de ir a Viana
| BANDA DE
MÚSICA DA CASA DO POVO DE MOREIRA DO LIMA S.
João d'Arga, Caminha |
29 AUG 2015 1'31''
BANDA FILARMÓNICA DE VILA NOVA DE ANHA Senhora
de Guadalupe, Castelo do Neiva |
31 AUG 2014 0'55''
Vira das palmas
| RAFAEL (Viana Bombos), Nossa Senhora da
Agonia, Viana do Castelo |
20 AUG 2014 0'48''