Within the movie The Twilight Saga: New Moon, Bella arrives in Volterra, Italy simply in time to avoid wasting Edward from revealing himself as a vampire to a throng of mortals on the St. Marcus Day pageant on March 19th. Attendees of the pageant, clad in pink, hooded robes, march in procession bearing a statue of St. Marcus to the church within the heart of city. Within the Twilight world, “St. Marcus” is well known by mortals for having rid the city of vampires, when he was, in reality, a vampire himself. Volterra is the house of the Volturri, the lawgivers of the vampire world. Marcus is certainly one of them. Some Twilight followers put on pink on March 19th to mark this vacation.

New Moon writer Stephanie Meyer borrowed the fictional St. Marcus Day from the actual European celebration of St. Mark’s Day. She modified the date: St. Mark’s Day is April 25th. As a result of the date coincides with observances of Easter (a moveable feast; the date varies, however it typically happens in March or April) and a variety of different Eurasian spring festivals, it’s thought that St. Mark’s Day is a Christianized model of a a lot older, Pagan observance. Within the e-book Ostara, Edain McCoy writes, “As was achieved with many Pagan festivals in Europe, the early church tried to refocus the symbolism of Ostara [the spring festival for Germanic Pagans] onto the Feast Day of St. Mark. As an alternative of being a pageant of rebirth, the St. Mark’s imagery was focused on loss of life and martyrdom, via which Christian rebirth is attained.”

St. Mark is historically thought of to be the writer of the Gospel of Mark within the Christian Bible. He is believed to be the companion of St. Paul, the good early Christian evangelist, that the Ebook of Acts of the Apostles refers to as “John Mark.” A disciple of Paul, Mark is assumed to have used Paul’s preaching as the premise for the Gospel. He’s additionally remembered because the founding father of the Coptic Church. Coptic custom holds that Mark seems within the Gospels because the younger man who carried water to the home the place the Final Supper of Jesus and his Apostles came about, because the younger man who ran away bare when Jesus was arrested, and to have poured the water Jesus was wine on the marriage ceremony at Cana.

Mark is claimed to have been martyred on April 25th within the yr 68 in Alexandria, Egypt. A bunch of native individuals resented his making an attempt to show them away from their conventional gods. They positioned a rope round his neck and dragged him via the streets till he was lifeless. His main shrines are in Egypt and Italy. His Italian shrine is the Basilica de San Marco in Venice, which is historically mentioned to be the place the place Mark’s stays are buried. So, he actually does have a connection to Italy, although not particularly to the city of Volterra.

Maybe due to his martyrdom, many curious traditions grew up over the centuries in regards to the celebration of St. Mark’s feast day. In seventeenth via nineteenth century England, particularly within the north and the west, folklore held that the wraiths of those that would die the next yr made a procession, within the order they might die, via the churchyard and into church at midnight on St. Mark’s Eve. Some mentioned the procession could be of coffins, or of headless or rotting corpses. Others mentioned the procession could be of identifiable, ghost-like wraiths, and that one may sit and watch the procession because it glided by and thus know who was going to die.

To see these wraiths, folklore claimed, one needed to be fasting. One other legend held that one needed to be current on the churchyard on St. Mark’s Eve for 3 years in a row, and solely in third yr would one see the wraiths. Typically, these residing watchers noticed their very own wraiths, and died not lengthy after. One other superstition concerning St. Mark’s Eve is that on this evening, witches who had offered their souls to the satan (or written their names within the satan’s e-book) and wished to maintain their unearthly powers needed to stroll thrice across the church backwards, peek via the keyhole, and recite sure phrases, or their powers could be misplaced.

One other conventional St. Mark’s Eve exercise was stirring the ashes of the fireside. If the ashes shaped the form of a shoe, somebody who lived within the family would die throughout the yr.

St. Mark’s Eve was certainly one of three nights of the yr related to the lifeless. The others are St. John’s Eve and All Hallow’s Eve. In line with some legends, on these three nights those that have died can return to the earth as spirits. This perception about All Hallow’s Eve (Halloween) is a Christian appropriation of the Celtic harvest pageant of Samhain, the purpose when the veil between the residing and the lifeless was at its thinnest, and likewise the midway level between autumn and winter. Equally, St. Mark’s Eve marks the midway level between spring and summer season and is related to the Pagan pageant of Ostara. St. John’s Eve, historically celebrated on June 23rd, is related to the Pagan feast of Midsummer, or the summer season solstice.

Not all the legends related to St. Mark’s Eve are related to loss of life, although. The evening was additionally one when younger ladies would attempt to divine whom their future mates could be. There have been a variety of methods to perform this: by choosing twelve leaves of sage at midnight, by strolling 9 instances round a haystack whereas reciting, “Here is the sheath, now the place’s the knife?” or by baking a dumb-cake, consuming a bit of the cake, then strolling backwards to mattress with out saying a phrase (therefore the phrase “dumb”). If a girl did any of this stuff, however particularly if she prayed to St. Mark whereas doing them, she would see the shadow of, or catch a fleeting glimpse of, the person she would sometime marry. Nevertheless, if she went to mattress with out seeing such a shadow and dreamed of a newly-dug grave, that meant she would die single.

These are largely English customs, although. In Italy, if St. Mark’s Day is well known in any respect, it’s with feasting, consuming, and/or providing bread to the much less lucky. The customized of sporting pink and having a procession appears to be Stephanie Meyer’s invention.

Source by Erin Schmidt

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