Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Floral Carpets for Corpus Christi in Assisi

We will begin our Corpus Christi photoposts very soon; in the meantime, I wanted to share these photos as a special post, courtesy of a friend who is currently living in Assisi. In many Italian towns, the path of the Corpus Christi procession is decorated with elaborate designs made out of flower petals, the work of many patient hours, and of course, destined not to last; there is an Italian word for these, “infiorate”, which has no direct equivalent in English. Each section is done independently, mostly on religious themes, especially, but not exclusively related to the Eucharist, and often with a remarkable degree of detail, while others may be a bit more abstract.

St Clare of Assisi holding a monstrance with the Blessed Sacrament, a reference to one of her more famous miracles (among many). In the year 1234, the army of the Emperor Frederick II, which counted a great many Saracens from Sicily in its number, were plundering the part of Umbria which includes Assisi. As the invaders sought to enter the convent at San Damiano, Clare took the ciborium from one of the chapels within the complex, and brought it to a window near the place where the soldiers had set a ladder against the walls in order to scale them. When she raised the Blessed Sacrament on high, the soldiers fell off the ladder and away from the wall as if dazzled, and the whole company of them fled.
A floral reproduction of Michelangelo’s Doni Tondo
Fish drawn in the same very simple manner seen in the Roman catacombs.

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