Recurrences Annual

Bonfires in Orsara di Puglia for the Feast of the Dead: "Fucacoste e Cocce priatorje"

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Luogo:Orsara di Puglia (FG)



Bonfires in Orsara di Puglia for the Feast of the Dead: “Fucacoste e Cocce priatorje”

On the occasion of the celebration of the Dead – also known as the Feast of the Dead – in Orsara di Puglia, a town in Daunia, there is a traditional festival with ancient origins: “Fucacoste e Cocce priatorje” (Bonfires and Heads of Purgatory). Dozens of large bonfires are lit in the streets of the town, and hundreds of pumpkins, carved by the citizens of Orsara, in human likeness, are displayed, illuminated inside them by a lantern. The holiday celebrates the souls of the departed who, according to popular tradition, on this night visit their relatives and return to what were their homes in life. It is therefore the task of the bonfires to warm these souls in their nocturnal wanderings and of the pumpkins to illuminate the houses where they lived.

The protagonist of the nightly bonfires is the broom, a shrub known for its ability to quickly fan flames to the sky, symbolizing the earthly and otherworldly dimensions whose boundaries on this magical night in the village fade. There is no shortage of traditional folk foods, baked bread and potatoes, boiled wheat, barbecued chestnuts, and typical sweets at the many banquets set up by the side of the fires and in the narrow streets.

Finally, the traditional festival is complemented by the religious rite with the Holy Mass in suffrage of the ancestors, preceded in the evening by the procession of the Confraternity of the Souls in Purgatory.


01 January 24

02 November 24


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71027 Orsara di Puglia, FG, Italia

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Municipality of Orsara (FG) and Pro Loco of Orsara di Puglia