MOORS AND CHRISTIANS IN POLLENçA
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The 2nd of August is the Patron Saint’s Day of Pollença, the festival of the Virgin María dels Àngels (Our lady of the angels). Despite the fact that the battle which is re-enacted on this day between the Saracens who came to lay siege to the town and the Christians, originally took place on the 31st of May 1550, today, it is the most important event of these festivities.


Many people from other towns come to Pollença to see the well-known mock battle, and there are also many tourists who are unaware of its existence and who are taken by surprised when come across the battle.


The Patron Saint’s Day in Pollença begins at five o’clock on the morning of the 2nd of August with the traditional Alborada, a piece of music played by the Pollença Musical Band, which plays their music through the streets of the town. This piece was composed by Nicolás de Castro and was performed for the first time in 1882. The morning continues with the dance of the cossiers, which was revived in 1981 after having disappeared for 71 years.


But the most keenly anticipated event is the mock battle between the Moors and the Christians which truly characterises the Saint’s Day festivities. It represents the victory won by the Christians of Pollença when faced by the corsairs’ attack. Led by Joan Mas, the people of the town faced the Saracen troops which were headed by Dragut. The mock battle begins in the Plaza de la Almoina, where the two sides face each other for the first time and where the first skirmish between them takes place after Joan Mas has made the well-known battle cry to the Virgin María dels Àngels. Apart from Dragut, the Saracen troops are accompanied by the standard bearer and his second in command; and apart from Joan Mas, the Christians are also aided by the l’Ajuntament Vella (the old town council). During the battle, which lasts for approximately two or three hours starting at 7 in the evening, small skirmishes take place until they reach the field at Can’n Escarrinxo, where the event comes to a close with the victory of the Christians.  


Once the battle is over, the Christians make their way to the church where the te deum is sung to celebrate their victory.  For their part, the Moors head for Monti Sion, where Dragut delivers a short speech about their defeat. Lastly, the whole town gathers to sing the Pollençan hymn “Viva Pollença” and the Albada is played for the last time, bringing the town’s Saint’s Day festivities to an end.  


As it was enacted traditionally, only the men actively take part in the battle.  The Christian men dress in white to represent the nightwear of the time, as do the Christian women. The clothing of the Moors is much more colourful and diverse. In order to enter the field at Can’n Escarrinxo, it is essential that you dress in white, and you need to be aware of where you stand to watch the mock battle, as it may be crowded and there may even be some pushing and shoving. 


Even though, as mentioned previously, the most important events take place on the 2nd of August, the days before this are also celebrated with various fairs, such as the Marcha fresca (a night of partying) or the Alborada; activities for children and adults, or voting to choose who will take charge of leading both sides, etc. 


If you are looking for some festivity and entertainment time during your holiday, contact Futurtrans. We would be delighted to put our buses at your disposal so that you can enjoy one of the best-known summer festivities on the island.

 

MOORS AND CHRISTIANS IN POLLENÇA

 

The 2nd of August is the Patron Saint’s Day of Pollença, the festival of the Virgin María dels Àngels (Our lady of the angels). Despite the fact that the battle which is re-enacted on this day between the Saracens who came to lay siege to the town and the Christians, originally took place on the 31st of May 1550, today, it is the most important event of these festivities.


Many people from other towns come to Pollença to see the well-known mock battle, and there are also many tourists who are unaware of its existence and who are taken by surprised when come across the battle.


The Patron Saint’s Day in Pollença begins at five o’clock on the morning of the 2nd of August with the traditional Alborada, a piece of music played by the Pollença Musical Band, which plays their music through the streets of the town. This piece was composed by Nicolás de Castro and was performed for the first time in 1882. The morning continues with the dance of the cossiers, which was revived in 1981 after having disappeared for 71 years.


But the most keenly anticipated event is the mock battle between the Moors and the Christians which truly characterises the Saint’s Day festivities. It represents the victory won by the Christians of Pollença when faced by the corsairs’ attack. Led by Joan Mas, the people of the town faced the Saracen troops which were headed by Dragut. The mock battle begins in the Plaza de la Almoina, where the two sides face each other for the first time and where the first skirmish between them takes place after Joan Mas has made the well-known battle cry to the Virgin María dels Àngels. Apart from Dragut, the Saracen troops are accompanied by the standard bearer and his second in command; and apart from Joan Mas, the Christians are also aided by the l’Ajuntament Vella (the old town council). During the battle, which lasts for approximately two or three hours starting at 7 in the evening, small skirmishes take place until they reach the field at Can’n Escarrinxo, where the event comes to a close with the victory of the Christians.  


Once the battle is over, the Christians make their way to the church where the te deum is sung to celebrate their victory.  For their part, the Moors head for Monti Sion, where Dragut delivers a short speech about their defeat. Lastly, the whole town gathers to sing the Pollençan hymn “Viva Pollença” and the Albada is played for the last time, bringing the town’s Saint’s Day festivities to an end.  


As it was enacted traditionally, only the men actively take part in the battle.  The Christian men dress in white to represent the nightwear of the time, as do the Christian women. The clothing of the Moors is much more colourful and diverse. In order to enter the field at Can’n Escarrinxo, it is essential that you dress in white, and you need to be aware of where you stand to watch the mock battle, as it may be crowded and there may even be some pushing and shoving. 


Even though, as mentioned previously, the most important events take place on the 2nd of August, the days before this are also celebrated with various fairs, such as the Marcha fresca (a night of partying) or the Alborada; activities for children and adults, or voting to choose who will take charge of leading both sides, etc. 


If you are looking for some festivity and entertainment time during your holiday, contact Futurtrans. We would be delighted to put our buses at your disposal so that you can enjoy one of the best-known summer festivities on the island.

 

 


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