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Minerva Corpus Christi

Why Minerva?

As is well known, the Roman goddess Minerva is the goddess of wisdom and arts, the patroness of artisans and protector of Rome. Daughter of Jupiter, who asked Vulcan for help due to a severe headache. Vulcan wielded an axe and opened Jupiter’s head, so Minerva could emerged, already armed.

She is usually represented with a helmet, carrying the pike and the shield, with the aegis on the chest.

Minerva. Pilate’s house. Seville.

The relationship of this goddess with the Christian Corpus Christi celebration has its origin in the Roman church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva, church built on the ancient remains of a pagan temple dedicated to the Roman goddess.

It was in 1539 when Pope Paul III approved the brotherhood of Minerva, a brotherhood founded by the Dominican Tomás de Stella, who defended the Eucharist and encouraged the confreres to attend on the third Sundays of each month to a mass with the exposure of the Blessed Sacrament.

Over time, numerous brotherhoods have been added to that of Rome.

Minerva Corpus of Saint Michael. Jerez de la Frontera.

The Corpus de Minerva began to be celebrated in 1956, on the Sunday following the feast of Corpus Christi, within the so-called «octave.»

The tradition marks the decoration of the streets of the flamenco neighborhood of San Miguel with sawdust dyed, made by the neighbors and the brotherhood associations.

During the celebration that takes place during the morning, one can see the procession the Archangel San Miguel (recently incorporated into the celebration), the Virgin of the Kings and the Custody.

Do you know other Corpus de Minerva? Leave your comments…

Carolina

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