Día de Sant Jordi

Local fiestas

The day of Sant Jordi in Catalonia is the day when the streets are filled with stalls of roses and books. It is tradition that men give women a rose and that women give a book to men. We say it in plural because nowadays not only roses are given to the partner, but also to friends, colleagues ......

But, where does this tradition come from?

From medieval legends, the knight who killed the dragon and saved a princess and the town in which he lived. From the blood of the dragon that spurted out grew a rosebush. From the gentleman who became a Saint for not persecuting Christians in the final stage of the Roman Empire, and from a “Lover's” Fair being held in Barcelona in the fifteenth century. And the April 23rd is also the International Day of the Book, so to the custom of giving a rose was added the habit of giving a book (1930). Interestingly, that the day, April 23rd, is not a holiday but it seems so, because the streets of Barcelona are full of people. A day to wander around in Barcelona, ​​a day for men to become symbolically knights and women princesses, and a day to promote the selling of books and, hopefully also the reading.

Open doors at the Barcelona City Hall

On Sant Jordi Day, the City Council of Barcelona celebrates an open day. The tour starts at the door of the street of the Ciutat (Gothic facade) and you can visit the Black Scale, the Capella del Bon Consell, the Saló de Cròniques, the Saló del Bon Govern, the Sala del Treball, the office of the mayor, the Saló de Carles Pi i Sunyer, the Saló de Cent, the Saló del Consolat de Mar, the Sala Tàpies, the Saló de Carles III, the Despatx d'Honor, the Saló de la Ciutat, the Gòtica Gallery and the Escala d'Honor. Several historical figures will receive visitors in the noble halls of the City Hall and in the courtyard of the City Hall there will be a shadow puppet show about the legend of Sant Jordi, by the Sant Camil Workshop.

Opening hours: 10.00 am - 6.00 pm
Schedule of the shadow puppet show: 11.00 - 17.00 (every 30 minutes)

Photo Francesc_2000. CC BY 2.0

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