Luminara of Saint Rainerius is a candlelight festival dedicated to the patron saint of the city. On this occasion, the city lights up with thousands of candles, creating an evocative and unique atmosphere that seems to bring the visitors back in time.
Each year, approximately 100,000 candles placed on wooden frames outline the architectural forms of the palaces, bridges, churches and towers located on the banks of the Arno River.
Later in the evening, many of the candles will be placed on the river water, between the Fortezza Bridge and the Citadella Bridge, creating an enchanting play of lights and reflections.
The first official document attesting the tradition of illuminating the city of Pisa with oil lamps dates back to 1337.
Before 1688, the feast was held on several occasions. Notable are the 1539 edition, in honor of Vittoria della Rovere, Grand Duchess of Tuscany and the wife of Grand Duke Ferdinando II, and the one of June 14, 1662, when the lights were set up in honor of Margherita Luisa, Princess of Orleans and wife of Cosimo III de’ Medici, who passed through Pisa on her way to Florence.
On March 25, 1688, the urn containing the remains of Saint Rainerius, patron saint of the city, was solemnly placed in a chapel in the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta. On this occasion, the city celebrated with candless, and the tradition of the feast was born.
The festival was banned in 1867, revived in 1937, on the same year with the Battle of the Bridge, and suspended again during the Second World War. In 1952, the Luminara tradition was restored, but in 1966, due to the flood of the Arno River, the tradition was interrupted again. The festival was resumed in June 1969.
The Pisan June (Giugno Pisano) is a series of events which take place during the month of June, in Pisa, in honor of the patron saint of the city, Saint Rainerius.
The Pisan June 2023 will probably begin on May 28, when the historical game of Mazzascudo will be held in Piazza dei Cavalieri, and will conclude on July 6, when the ceremony of the Marriage with the Sea will take place.
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