New Year in Florence on the 25th of March ? Really?
Yes! I am not joking!!
But let’s start to make order.
NEW YEAR IN FLORENCE: THE HISTORY
Since the 7th century there is an ancient tradition for which in Florence people celebrate the new year on the 25th of March.
This date is a very important religiuos day.
Indeed the 25th of March is the Announciation day, the day in which the Archangel Gabriel announces to the Virgin that she will be the mother of Jesus, son of God.
Actually this is exactly 9 months before the 25th of December the birth day of Jesus.
This calendar was called Giulian Calendar because of Giulio Cesare, who was the one to decided thi particoular calculation for the years day. So originally there was no religious meaning.
WHAT ABOUT THE 31ST DECEMBER?
In 1582 the Pope Gregorio XIII decided to recalculate the years daysand they changed to the Gregorain Calendar, for which the year starts the 1 January.
Naturally…. people pf Florence did not care.
For them the New Year was the 25th of March and they keept on celebratig on that day.
Maybe it was also for the faith of the town to the Vergin Mary, and maybe because of the indiopendence feelings of Florence.
Finally in 1749 the Grand Duke Feridnando the III of Florence decide to move the New Years to the 1st January as it was already in many States.
Under the Loggia dei Lanzi in Florence there is a board that reminds about this happening.
In our day there are still celebrations on the 25th of March, inside the Santissima Annunziata church that even by the name, reminds to the religious happening of the 25th of March, the Announciation.
But the big party for the New Year we do it on the 1st of January.
The big celebrations are during the last evening in which we make fire games, concerts in the squares, big dinner and we throw from the window all the old dishes and habits!