Florentine New Year. What it is and why it is celebrated on March 25
Our city has its own start of the year: we reveal its origins and special initiatives to celebrate
Many people do not know that on March 25 the city of Florence celebrates the Florentine New Year. The City has included this date in the annual calendar of popular festivals and traditions and official celebrations.
From the Middle Ages until 1750, in fact, this was the day on which the Church recalled the announcement of the Incarnation received from the Virgin Mary and was taken as the beginning of the civil calendar.
In the Tuscan capital this was the date on which New Year's Day was celebrated, even when in the rest of Italy the Gregorian calendar was already in force, according to which the year began on January 1st.
While the states conformed to this religious dictate, Florence, linked to the Marian cult, decided not to abandon the feast of March 25. This recurrence for the Florentines will last for 168 years and will cease in the month of November 1750, when a decree of Grand Duke Francis II of Lorraine imposed the use of the Gregorian calendar, fixing also for Florence the beginning of the year on January 1 (under the Loggia dei Lanzi there is the plaque that commemorates the decree of the suppression of the feast).
A celebration that has symbolically survived until today and that also unites us with some of our "neighbors". A hundred kilometers away, under the Leaning Tower, the Pisan New Year is celebrated on the same day (but in "advance" of 365 days).
Nowadays, this ancient New Year's Eve remains the oldest tradition, officially revived by the Municipality of Florence since 2000 with the parade of the historical procession of the Florentine Republic from the Palagio di Parte Guelfa to Santissima Annunziata, the main Marian shrine of the city.
The symbol of the festival is in fact the fresco depicting the Annunciation, kept inside the basilica, where once the peasants went on pilgrimage to pay homage to the effigy of the Annunciation, on which there is a legend.
The work would be miraculous: it is said that the painter, a certain friar Bartolomeo, could not complete the scene because he was not able to portray the features of the Madonna's face. To finish the masterpiece - always according to the myth - would have been a prodigious hand, that of angels.
APPOINTMENTS IN THE CITY
On the occasion of the Florentine New Year 2022, the Florentine Civic Museums and MUS.E are organizing for the entire weekend - March 25th, 26th and 27th - special visits that will focus on the origin of the feast and on the sense of "Florentine-ness" that is linked to this celebration.
On Saturday, March 26th in Santa Maria Novella it will be possible to take part in four special visits on the iconography of the Annunciation, wonderfully depicted in numerous works of the Dominican complex, while for the whole weekend extraordinary thematic visits are scheduled, in the evening (at 8pm and 9pm), at the Museo Stefano Bardini and the Museo Novecento: the initiatives will allow the visitor to get to know better the figures of Stefano Bardini and Alberto Novecento of Stefano Bardini and Alberto della Ragione.
Paolo Vallesi will present his new double album IoNoi at Palazzo Vecchio (Sala Firenze Capitale on March 25): with the artist, the mayor Dario Nardella and the councillor for productive activities Federico Gianassi.
There will also be the Florentine New Year's market in Piazza Santa Maria Novella by Confesercenti and Confartigianato, in collaboration with Unicoop Firenze and Firenze Smart, from March 25 to 27, with the exhibition of about thirty operators in the field of handicrafts, Florentine artistic handicrafts and agricultural producers of the province of Florence and agri-food excellence.
Sunday in Piazza del Carmine (at 7.30 am) departure of the hot air balloon! In the footsteps of John Luder, historical re-enactment of the first flight over Florence in a hot air balloon, organized by Firenze mongolfiera.