art and culture

holy week

Valsesia e vercellese


Discover the Easter traditions of the province of Vercelli

via crucis – quarona

Since the 1980s, the Via Crucis (Stations of the Cross), a true re-enactment of the Passion of Christ, has been performed in the town of Quarona on Good Friday. The Sacred Representation of Good Friday in Quarona is unique in the province of Vercelli. It was first staged in 1982 and has become more and more popular every year, becoming one of the most popular events in the valley.

The scenes performed, which used to be itinerant in the city, as of 2019 take place in Piazza Silvio Pellico and then move up to the area surrounding the church of San Giovanni al Monte. On the evening of Good Friday, the 18 scenes of the Stations of the Cross are performed.

processione delle sette marie – Varallo

There are no official documents to determine the exact moment when this tradition originated in Varallo. The most accredited hypothesis seems to be the tendency to place this event within the paraliturgical rites of the Passion of the Spanish ancestry, considering the important presence of the Iberian rulers in the Duchy of Milan, to which Valsesia belonged until the beginning of the 18th century.

While during the evening of Good Friday the procession takes place within the town centre, starting from the Collegiate Church of San Gaudenzio to reach the Church of San Giacomo and back, in the afternoon of Palm Sunday the procession departs from the Collegiate Church of San Gaudenzio to reach the impressive Sacro Monte. During the procession seven unmarried women with their faces covered by a black veil form a mournful procession, two of them hold up a third one destined to carry the cross, veiled by a white sheet and deprived of the body of Christ, while the others arrange themselves in a sort of symbolic square. Following the Seven Marys are the members of the Confraternity of the Holy Trinity, dressed in blue tunics and carrying lanterns, and those of the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, who, dressed in red robes, lead the statue of Our Lady of Sorrows in procession.

Ascent to the Sacro Monte of Varallo – Processione delle Sette Marie

processione delle macchine – VERCelli

This event originated in 1833, when the processions that were organised by the individual confraternities (which began in the 18th century and were soon regulated by a precise order of appearance) joined that of the Holy Crucifix of Saint Andrew’s Company, which took place in Vercelli on Good Friday.

The so-called ‘machines’ are sculptural groups made from coloured wood representing the various episodes of the Passion of Christ, from the Garden of Olives to the Crucifixion. In ancient times, the stretcher used for carrying sick people was called a “machine”. The term later came to mean, in a broader sense, the base on which statues were placed for transport. The “machines” are transferred on Friday to the Basilica of Sant’Andrea, where the procession that brings them all together begins. It then continues by candlelight and torchlight through the streets and piazzas of the town’s centre. A relic of the Holy Cross is also carried in the procession.

Processione delle Macchine departing from St Andrew’s Abbey

su questa

Compila il form per saperne di più su questa NEws

to our

A concentrate of curiosities,
events and news directly
in your inbox

Valsesia and Vercelli: a wonderful discovery

Events Sleeping Eating Weather Webcam Media Area