SEVILLE, MALAGA, CORDOVA, CADIZ, GRANADA
Rather than a tribute to the suffering and death, the Semana Santa (Holy Week) in Andalusia is a celebration of the Resurrection and of Life. Religious people, take to the streets to rediscover the artistic treasures kept in the churches and hidden corners of their town and cities.
In Seville, the cofradías are universally famous for their rich processions that follow a pennitant paht to the Cathedral and return among the aroma of inciense, wax, and orange blossoms. Throughout the entire week the city becomes a priviledged stage where more than fifty processions take the streets, among the devotion of the belivers and the admiration of the riches exhibited. The departures and returns at the corresponding parishes are special moment where processions are surrounded by their pasishioners. The most famous pasos appear during the madrugá, the longest evening, which takes place during the late night hours between Thursday and Friday. They include the Virgin of Macarena - which includes the armaos, a platoon of roman soldiers - the Hermandad (brotherhood) of the Gypisies, and the Esperanza de Triana, whose festive followers contrast with serene graveness of their images.
The Semana Santa in Malaga has been declared of International Touristic Interest. The people of Malaga, especially the youth, become part of the processions like the Señor de los Gitanos on Holy Monday; Nuestro Padre Jesús el Rico on Wednesday which includes a tradition, from the times of Charles the III, of freeing a prisoner; the Christ of Buena Muerte which is accompanied by the Legion, and the Esperanza Perchelera, which take place on Holy Thursday.
In Cordova the figure of Jesús Rescatado, which is taken on procession during the afternoon on Palm Sunday, is accompanied by thousands of devout followers fulfilling their promises. Other peak moments of Cordova's Holy Week are reached with the Santísimo Cristo de la Salud and the Cristo del Remedio on the evening of Holy Monday; with Nuestro Padre Jesús Caído and Nuestra Señora de las Angustias on Holy Thursday and the Cristo de la Buena Muerte on Thursday after midnight. The Coliblancos and Colinegros (white tails and black tails) of Baena are outstanding. Their rivaling drum rolls until the Holy Burial.
The singing of saetas and the smell of orange blossoms are the protanists in the streets of Jerez de la Frontera (Sherry, in Cadiz). The procession of the Angustias takes place on Palm sunday; The entry of the Cristo de la Viga, on Holy Monday, is the most enthisastic moment of the week along with the return of Nuestra Señora de la Soledad on Holy Friday.
The Corpus Christi is the most significant procession in Granada. It is held one Thursday in June to commemorate the institution of the Eucharist which was first celebrated in Lieja in 1246 and later spread through Europe. It expresses tha ge old pact between Church and State. Military men, clergymen, professional and artisan associations, and political representatives parade through the streets which are covered with aromatic herbs and flowers.