Thursday, July 19, 2012
Trastevere: the Festa de' Noantri
Every year Trastevere celebrate the Festa de' Noantri (our festival), a traditional festivity for the people of the rione. The celebration takes place on the second half of July. As a kid, I remember Trastevere all embellished and with many stalls along Viale Trastevere, and a big marry-go-round on Piazza Mastai.
Today the celebration is limited, nevertheless during this time, Trastevere, which is one of the most characteristic and still colourful ancient district across the Tiber River from the main historic center of Rome, became a destination for many tourists and for the locals.
Originally the Festa began in 1927. Even so, its routes can be back dated to 1535, when a fisherman caught in his nets a statue of the Virgin Mary in the Tiber. After the event the statue, nicknamed Madonna Fiumarola (of the river) was donated to the Carmelite nuns of San Crisogono (in Piazza Sonnino) in Trastavere and became the patron saint of the district.
Today the statue is in the Church of St Agatha, in Largo San Giovanni de Matha, in Trastevere. Replaced during the XXth century by another statue, which will takes bride of place during this festivity, the Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel is taken around and followed by believers and curious on the Saturday following July 16th.
This year the Madonna will be carried with great pageantry from Saint Agatha to the church of San Crisogono in Trastevere, where it stays just over a week, before being carried back to Saint Agatha's.
On the last night Trastevere has big fire works, therefore if you are in the area during this period don't miss the occasion!