The 12th day of Christmas my true love said to me…

No, not the song, just the 12th day of Christmas as in The Epiphany or the Adoration of the Magi who came to Bethlehem 12 days After Christmas by following the comet and bearing gifts for the baby Jesus. Not something that is normally taught in America, or not as how I remembered it.

January 6th, the 12th day after Christmas is a big deal in Europe. Actually, the night before, 11th night is a big deal with old folklore stories including a witch and gifts in a stocking, (kind of like combining Halloween and Santa together!) but day 12 is THE day.

In France they celebrate with the Kings Cake or Galette des Rois where they hide a tiny figurine of Mary, Joseph and Jesus for the lucky eater to find (hopefully not with their tooth!)

We’ve always been in France for Epiphany day so this was our first Italian celebration and wow is Florence the right place to be. It’s an entire processional of fully dressed and decked out people who are re-enacting the 3 Wise Men walking to the live Manger in central square Florence. The entire villages and royalty are represented in full period clothing, including Eagles, Owls, donkeys, goats and horses. It was site to behold!

I think I prefer the parade to the cake! What are your thoughts? Enjoy our photos, it was a fun day and a wonderful new experience and such a great surprise. I love learning new traditions and history and who doesn’t love a parade?!


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