On July 26 in Capizzi there is a very important event or the feast of St. James.

This festival is expected all year round by the inhabitants of Capizzi. The saint is placed on a fercolo carried on the shoulder by the Capitini and at 6:00 pm the saint is left accompanied by the musical band playing the Piave. After exiting the sanctuary, the fercolo goes around the streets of the town, making stops in the various churches. Every year many citizens make offerings to the saint, these offerings can be white tablecloths, money or provola that are hung on the fercolo.

The most important event that takes place during the procession is the demolition of the wall (the so-called “Miracles”). There are two legends that explain the demolition of the wall: the first says that in the house where the wall was demolished there was a pagan temple and then the capitini destroyed it to chase them away; the other legend (the most likely) that a knight Sancho De Heredia lived there in that house and he was commissioned by the Pope to bring relics to Messina. Before arriving in Messina, Sancho stopped for some time in Capizzi and in that period Capizzi was the destination of many pilgrimages to visit the relics. The bishop of Messina did not accept the fact that Capizzi had all these visitors and therefore called the Pope who ordered Sancho De Heredia to bring the relics to Messina. When the Capitini discovered the Pope’s order, they broke through the house of Sancho De Heredia with the fercolo of San Giacomo and took the relic of San Giacomo.

In Capizzi there is still a very important legend today regarding the number of shots to break through the wall. The ancients argue that, if the number of blows given to the wall is even, the year for farmers will be very good; if, on the other hand, the number of hits is odd, the year will not be fruitful for farmers.

The feast of San Giacomo for me is the most beautiful feast that exists and should be seen by everyone.

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Giuseppe Fascetto


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