Author Topic: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters  (Read 31906 times)

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Offline D.B. Barnes

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #30 on: December 20, 2011, 12:29:56 PM »
VIVA IL ESORDIO DEL DIABETE ADULTO DUCE!!!


Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #31 on: December 20, 2011, 01:30:27 PM »
Isn't there anyone who knows all about


#40 - Dionysus
?


Prof.Linus Van Pelt
Sure,  I can tell you all about Dionysus

Lights, please. Dionysus, also commonly known by his Roman name Bacchus, appears to be a god who has two distinct origins. On the one hand, Dionysus was the god of wine, agriculture, and fertility of nature, who is also the patron god of the Greek stage. On the other hand, Dionysus also represents the outstanding features of mystery religions, such as those practiced at Eleusis: ecstasy, personal delivery from the daily world through physical or spiritual intoxication, and initiation into secret rites. Scholars have long suspected that the god known as Dionysus is in fact a fusion of a local Greek nature god, and another more potent god imported rather late in Greek pre-history from Phrygia (the central area of modern day Turkey) or Thrace.

According to one myth, Dionysus is the son of the god Zeus and the mortal woman, Semele (daughter of Cadmus of Thebes). Semele is killed by Zeus' lightning bolts while Dionysus is still in her womb. Dionysus is rescued and undergoes a second birth from Zeus after developing in his thigh. Zeus then gives the infant to some nymphs to be raised. In another version, one with more explicit religious overtones, Dionysus, also referred to as Zagreus in this account, is the son of Zeus and Persephone, Queen of the Underworld. Hera gets the Titans to lure the infant with toys, and then they rip him to shreds eating everything but Zagreus' heart, which is saved by either Athena, Rhea, or Demeter. Zeus remakes his son from the heart and implants him in Semele who bears a new Dionysus Zagreus. Hence, as in the earlier account, Dionysus is called "twice born." The latter account formed a part of the Orphic religion's religious mythology.
It does seem clear that Dionysus, at least the Phrygian Dionysus, was a late arrival in the Greek world and in Greek mythology. He is hardly mentioned at all in the Homeric epics, and when he is it is with some hostility. A number of his stories are tales of how Dionysus moved into a city, was resisted, and then destroyed those who opposed him. The most famous account of this is that of Euripides in his play the Bacchae. He wrote this play while in the court of King Archelaus of Macedon, and nowhere do we see Dionysus more destructive and his worship more dangerous than in this play. Scholars have speculated not unreasonably that in Macedon Euripides discovered a more extreme form of the religion of Dionysus being practiced than the more civil, quiet forms in Athens.
Briefly, Dionysus returns to Thebes, his putative birthplace, where his cousin Pentheus is king. He has returned to punish the women of Thebes for denying that he was a god and born of a god. Pentheus is enraged at the worship of Dionysus and forbids it, but he cannot stop the women, including his mother Agave, or even the elder statesmen of the kingdom from swarming to the wilds to join the Maenads (a term given to women under the ecstatic spell of Dionysus) in worship. Dionysus lures Pentheus to the wilds where he is killed by the Maenads and then mutilated by Agave.
The Dionysia was a large festival in ancient Athens in honor of the god Dionysus, the central events of which were the theatrical performances of dramatic tragedies and, from 487 BC, comedies. It was the second-most important festival after the Panathenaia.
The Dionysia was originally a rural festival in Eleutherae, Attica (, probably celebrating the cultivation of vines. It was probably a very ancient festival, perhaps not originally associated with Dionysus. This "rural Dionysia" was held during the winter, in the month of Poseideon (roughly corresponding to December). The central event was the pompe (πομπή), the procession, in which phalloi were carried by phallophoroi. Also participating in the pompe were kanephoroi (young girls carrying baskets), obeliaphoroi (who carried long loaves of bread), skaphephoroi (who carried other offerings), hydriaphoroi (who carried jars of water), and askophoroi (who carried jars of wine).
After the pompe procession was completed, there were contests of dancing and singing, and choruses (led by a choregos) would perform dithyrambs. Some festivals may have included dramatic performances, possibly of the tragedies and comedies that had been produced at the City Dionysia the previous year. This was more common in the larger towns, such as Piraeus and Eleusis.
Because the various towns in Attica held their festivals on different days, it was possible for spectators to visit more than one festival per season. It was also an opportunity for Athenian citizens to travel outside the city if they did not have the opportunity to do so during the rest of the year. This also allowed travelling companies of actors to perform in more than one town during the period of the festival.
The comic playwright Aristophanes parodied the Rural Dionysia in his play The Acharnians. :

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/2QbgJ22eTqQ" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/2QbgJ22eTqQ</a>

Festival: Rural Dionysia
Total Points: 24
1/12 Lists
Highest Placement: 2 (Tripe)



Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #32 on: December 20, 2011, 01:32:00 PM »
And we'll be back with something delightful and fragrant to start the 30s tomorrow. :)


Offline a pretty girl is like

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #33 on: December 20, 2011, 02:09:45 PM »
Thank you, Compound, for helping me get We're No Angels on the list!  :highfive:  Peter Ustinov is so money he doesn't even know it.

Also seriously, Bing could give Krampus a few pointers on how to throw a beating on a kid.
I'm all out for kicks...and every inch of me spells EXCITEMENT!


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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #34 on: December 20, 2011, 03:11:40 PM »
But that's not the point of these lists, or indeed voting in general.

According to you. I am allowed to have my own opinion on the matter

But not your own facts.

They are NOT my "own facts" but if you people insist on that being the case, then fine. Seems slightly tyrant-esque to insist that I am not allowed to voice what I feel.


What what upsets me more is that I was NOT arguing and I was NOT saying that I was correct and you were wrong. I was saying "You can have that opinion and I still am your friend" and yet, you two have to come in and continue to tell me why I am incorrect.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2011, 03:16:01 PM by Anais.whatever »


Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #35 on: December 20, 2011, 03:29:29 PM »
Seems slightly tyrant-esque to insist that I am not allowed to voice what I feel.
Nobody is stopping you do that are they? Though I'd prefer this not clutter up this thread ny longer so if you want to continue this please take it elsewhere. :)


Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #36 on: December 21, 2011, 06:26:29 AM »
Isn't there anyone who knows all about


#39 - The Caganer
?


Prof.Linus Van Pelt
Sure,  I can tell you all about the Caganer.

Lights, please: A Caganer (Catalan pronunciation: [kəɣəˈne], Western Catalan: [kaɣaˈne]) is a figurine appearing in nativity scenes in Catalonia and neighbouring areas with Catalan culture such as Andorra, Valencia, Northern Catalonia (in southern France) and the Balearic Islands. It is most popular and widespread in these areas, but can also be found in other areas of Spain (Murcia), Portugal and southern Italy (Naples). The figure is depicted in the act of defecation.

The exact origin of the Caganer is lost, but the tradition has existed since at least the 18th century. According to the Friends of Caganer group (Amics del Caganer), it is believed to have entered the nativity scene by the late 17th-early 18th century, during the Baroque period. An Iberian votive deposit was found near Tornabous in the Urgell depicting a holy Iberian warrior defecating on his falcata. This began a short-lived series of polemics between the Institut d'Estudis Catalans and the Departament d'Arqueologia in the Conselleria de Cultura of the Generalitat de Catalunya as to whether the find can be regarded as a proto-caganer (which would place the origin of this tradition far earlier than previously thought) or just a pre-combat ritual.

In Catalonia, as well as in the rest of Spain and in most of Italy and Southern France, traditional Christmas decorations sometimes consist of a large model of the city of Bethlehem, similar to the Nativity scenes of the English-speaking world but encompassing the entire city rather than just the typical manger scene. In Catalonia, the pessebre or nativity scene is often a reproduction of a pastoral scene with a traditional Catalan masia (farmhouse) as a central setting with the child in a manger, with outlying scenes of a washerwoman by a river, a woman spinning, shepherds walking towards the manger area laden with gifts and herding their sheep, the three wise men approaching on horseback, an annunciation scene with the angel and shepherds, the star pointing the way, etc, all of this usually set on moss to represent grass, with cork used to represent mountains or cliffs. Another variant is to make the setting oriental, with the wise men arriving by camel and the figures dressed accordingly.

The caganer is a particular and highly popular feature of modern Catalan nativity scenes. It is believed to have entered the nativity scene by the late 17th-early 18th century, during the Baroque period. The eminent folklorist, Joan Amades, called it an essential piece and the most popular figure of the nativity scene. It can also be found in other parts of southwestern Europe, including Murcia, the region just south of the Valencia in Spain (where they are called cagones), Naples (cacone or pastore che caca) and Portugal (cagões). There is a sculpture of a person defecating hidden inside the cathedral of Ciudad Rodrigo, Province of Salamanca, though this is not part of a nativity scene. Accompanying Mary, Joseph, Jesus, the shepherds and company, the caganer is often tucked away in a corner of the model, typically nowhere near the manger scene. A tradition in the Catalan Countries is to have children find the hidden figure.
Possible reasons for placing a figure representing a person in the act of excreting waste in a scene which is widely considered holy include:
  • Tradition.
  • Perceived humour.
  • A fun spectacle, especially for children.
  • The Caganer, by creating faeces, is fertilizing the Earth. According to the ethnographer, Joan Amades, it was a "customary figure in pessebres in the 19th century, because people believed that this deposit [symbolically] fertilized the ground of the pessebre, which became fertile and ensured the pessebre for the following year, and with it, the health of body and peace of mind required to make the pessebre, with the joy and happiness brought by Christmas near the hearth.
  • Placing this figurine in the pessebre brought good luck and joy and not doing so brought adversity."
  • The Caganer represents the equality of all people: regardless of status, race, or gender, everyone defecates.
  • Increased naturalism of an otherwise archetypal (thus idealised) story, so that it is more believable, more real and can be taken more seriously.
  • The idea that God will manifest himself when he is ready, without regard for whether we human beings are ready or not.
  • The Caganer reinforces the belief that the infant Jesus is God in human form, with all that being human implies.
  • The character introduces a healthy amount of religious doubt to test one's faith.

The practice is tolerated by the local Catholic church. Though the tradition is highly popular and beloved, there are, however, divided opinions among the local population as to whether it is really appropriate, which means that not all nativity scenes in Catalonia include caganers.

The Caganer is not the only defecating character in the Catalan Christmas tradition—another is the Tió de Nadal, which also makes extensive use of the image of faecal matter (it is a log, i.e. tió, with a face painted on it, which, having been "fed" for several weeks, is told to defecate on Christmas eve and "magically" produces candy for children, a candy that has supposedly come from its bowels). Other mentions of faeces and defecation are common in Catalan folklore: indeed, a popular Catalan saying for use before a meal is "menja bé, caga fort i no tinguis por a la mort!" (Eat well, shit a good deal and don't be afraid of death!).

The Caganer can also be found in other European cultures, either as an important or a minor local tradition:
  • In France: Père la Colique ("Father Cholic"). In France this figure seems to date from the 1930s or 40s.
  • In Murcia, the region just south of the Valencian Country in Spain (where they are called cagones),
  • The Naples area, where it is known as cacone or pastore che caca
  • Portugal, where they are known as cagões
Possible translations of the caganer concept into other languages include:
  • In the Dutch / Flemish: Kakkers / Schijterkes ("Pooper"/"Little Pooper")
  • In German: Choleramännchen or Hinterlader ("Little Cholera Man" or "Breech-loader")

The traditional caganer is portrayed as a Catalan peasant man (i.e. a farmer or sheperd) wearing a typical hat called a barretina — a red stocking hat with a black band. At least since the late 1970s, the figure of a traditional Catalan peasant woman was also added, wearing traditional garb including the long black hairnet.

The Catalans have modified this tradition a good deal since the 1940s. In addition to the traditional caganer design, you can easily find other characters assuming the Caganer position, such as nuns, devils, Santa Claus, celebrities, athletes, historical figures, politicians, Spanish royalty, British royalty,[10] and other famous
people past and present. Just days after his election as US president in 2008, a "pooper" of Barack Obama was made available.

Caganers are easiest to find before Christmas in holiday markets, like the one in front of the Cathedral of Santa Eulalia, which has many tables of Caganers. Every year new figures are created, and some people collect them. Caganers are the focal point of at least one association (Els Amics del Caganer, i.e. Friends of the Caganer), which puts out a regular bulletin ("El Caganòfil") and have even been featured in art exhibits.

In recent years a urinating statue, or Pixaner, has also appeared, but it hasn't taken root or gained any serious popularity.

In 2005, the Barcelona city council provoked a public outcry by commissioning a nativity scene which did not include a Caganer. Many saw this as an attack on Catalan traditions. The local government countered these criticisms by claiming that the Caganer was not included because a recent by-law had made public defecation and urination illegal, meaning that the Caganer was now setting a bad example. Following a campaign against this decision called Salvem el caganer (Save the caganer), and widespread media criticism, the 2006 nativity restored the Caganer, who appeared on the northern side of the nativity near a dry riverbed.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/LJxHHP-aTOc" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/LJxHHP-aTOc</a>

Festival: Christmas
Total Points:24
2/12 Lists
Highest Placement: 10 (Tripe)
« Last Edit: December 21, 2011, 06:32:13 AM by Tripe H. Redux »


Offline wurwolf

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #37 on: December 21, 2011, 06:45:11 AM »
What the....

Okay, I'm not surprised Tripe has heard of this. Who else had this on their list??
Bonhead #2
fs!!



Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #38 on: December 21, 2011, 07:08:33 AM »
Isn't there anyone who knows all about


#38 - The Riverbottom Nightmare Band
?


Prof.Linus Van Pelt
Sure,  I can tell you all about The Riverbottom Nightmare Band

Lights, please: The Riverbottom Nightmare Band, also known as "The Nightmare," is the last-minute addition to the talent show in Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas. The band members include:
Chuck Stoat on keyboards (performed by Frank Oz)
Pop-eyed Catfish (performed by Dave Goelz)
Stanley Weasel on guitar (performed by Jerry Nelson)
Fred Lizard on drums (performed by Richard Hunt)
Howard Snake on bass (performed by Jim Henson)
The Riverbottom Nightmare Band's repertoire includes the self-referential "Riverbottom Nightmare Band".
When not performing on stage, the band members enjoy breaking traffic laws, riding their snowmobiles, and destroying merchandise.

<a href="http://mediaservices.myspace.com/services/media/embed.aspx/m=9651657" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://mediaservices.myspace.com/services/media/embed.aspx/m=9651657</a>

Festival: Christmas
Total Points: 25
1/12 Lists
Highest Placement: 1 (ColeStratton)


Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #39 on: December 21, 2011, 07:50:55 AM »
Isn't there anyone who knows all about


#37 - Dropo
?


Prof.Linus Van Pelt
Sure,  I can tell you all about Dropo

Lights, please: Santa Claus Conquers the Martians is a 1964 science fiction film that regularly appears on lists of the worst films ever made. It is regularly featured in the "bottom 100" list on the Internet Movie Database, and was also featured in an episode of the 1986 syndicated series, the Canned Film Festival. It was directed by Nicholas Webster, and it stars John Call as Santa Claus. It also includes an 8-year-old Pia Zadora playing the role of one of the Martian children.
The film took on newfound fame in the 1990s after being featured on an episode of the comedy series Mystery Science Theater 3000. It became a holiday staple on the Comedy Central cable channel in the years following its 1991 premiere, helping it become one of the series' most popular episodes. It has since found new life again in the 2000s (decade) having been riffed by Cinematic Titanic, which includes five former cast members from MST3K, as of November 2008. The movie was also featured on the current run of Elvira's Movie Macabre.

The story involves the people of Mars, including Momar ("Mom Martian") and Kimar ("King Martian"), They're worried that their children Girmar ("Girl Martian") and Bomar ("Boy Martian") are watching too much Earth television, most notably station KID-TV's interview with Santa Claus in his workshop at the North Pole. Consulting the ancient 800-year old Martian sage Chochem (a Yiddish word meaning "genius"), they are advised that the children of Mars are growing distracted due to the society's overly rigid structure; from infancy, all their education is fed into their brains through machines and they are not allowed individuality or freedom of thought.

Chochem notes that he had seen this coming "for centuries", and says the only way to help the children is to allow them their freedom and be allowed to have fun. To do this, they need a Santa Claus figure, like on Earth. Leaving the Chochem's cave, the Martian leaders decide to abduct Santa Claus from Earth and bring him to Mars. As the Martians could not distinguish between all the fakes Santas, they kidnapped two children to find the real one. Once this is accomplished, one Martian, Voldar, who strongly disagrees with the idea, repeatedly tries to kill Santa Claus along with two kidnapped Earth children. He believes that Santa is corrupting the children of Mars and turning them away from the race's original glory.

When they arrive on Mars, Santa and the children build a factory to make toys for the children. However, Voldar and his assistants, Stobo and Shim, sabotage the factory and change the programming so that it makes the toys incorrectly. Meanwhile, Dropo, Kimar's assistant, has taken a great liking to Santa Claus and Christmas, puts on one of Santa's spare suits and starts acting like Santa Claus. He goes to the toy factory to make toys, but Voldar mistakes him for Santa and kidnaps him.

When Santa and the children come back to the factory to make more toys, they discover the machines have been tampered with. Voldar and Stobo come back to the factory to make a deal with Kimar, but when they see the real Santa Claus they realize that their plan has been foiled. Dropo, held hostage in a cave, tricks his guard Shim and escapes. Kimar then arrests Voldar, Stobo and Shim. Santa notices Dropo acts like him, and says that Dropo would make a good Martian Santa.

Kimar agrees to let Dropo be the Martian Santa Claus and sends Santa and the children back to Earth.

It has been named one of the worst films ever. A remake has been rumored since 2000 with David Zucker as producer and Jim Carrey attached to play Dropo, though it is currently believed to be in development hell.

The movie was featured in episode number 3.21 of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and a new version by the MST3K spinoff Cinematic Titanic became available in late November 2008 Scenes from the movie were used in both A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All! (during the song sung by Toby Keith), and Eloise at Christmastime (when Sir Wilkes is watching television).

The movie spawned a tongue-in-cheek novelization by Lou Harry, released by Penguin Books/Chamberlain Bros. in 2005. The book, which includes a DVD of the original film presents the story from the perspective of a now-adult Girmar, who has not only succeeded her father as ruler of Mars, but also narrates the tale in a 'valley girl'-esque type of language.

In 1993 a theatrical production of Santa Claus Conquers the Martians, the Musical premiered at the Factory Theatre in Chicago, adapted and directed by Sean Abley. In 2006 a second theatrical production premiered at the Maverick Theater in Fullerton, California, this version was adapted by Brian Newell and Nick McGee. The Maverick's production has become a comedic success, a local tradition and performed every holiday season there since 2006, with the next production to be performed in December 2010.

Brazilian comedy group Hermes & Renato spoofed the film in their MTV program Tela Class, redubbing it as "Santa Claus e o pozinho mágico" (Santa Claus and the Magic Powder; "magic powder" being more loosely translated here as "angel dust"). In this version, Santa is a drug dealer.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/uUVd14Bx63A?" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/uUVd14Bx63A?</a>

Festival: Christmas (or Martian Equivalent)
Total Points: 26
2/12 Lists
Highest Placement:6  (Pak-Man)


Offline D.B. Barnes

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #40 on: December 21, 2011, 07:52:09 AM »
What the....

Okay, I'm not surprised Tripe has heard of this. Who else had this on their list??

Me. They have them all over the place at nativity stores in Naples, but I actually knew about them prior to that.  Gives new meaning to the term "Yule Log."

 :o  :scared:  :gouge:



VIVA IL ESORDIO DEL DIABETE ADULTO DUCE!!!


Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #41 on: December 21, 2011, 08:04:00 AM »
And back later with a few more, I am hoping to get to #30 today, got a fw errands to run today and it's Ann's first day off from work so it might be a while, but I shall endeavour to get to at least that point. :)


Offline Johnny Unusual

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #42 on: December 21, 2011, 11:22:34 AM »


#37 - Dropo

I thought maybe it was just the riffing on MST3K 321 that turned me off this movie, so I tried it with CineTit as well.  Nope. I have a really, really hard time getting through this movie. I really dislike it.  It makes no fucking sense.

Yeah, it's pretty bad.  To quote Mary Jo from the CineTit version: "Thanks kids, I now hate fun."


Offline Darth Geek

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #43 on: December 21, 2011, 12:45:49 PM »
D'oh! I should have put Droppo on my list.


 :o  :scared:  :gouge:




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Offline Tripe

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Re: LOC 55: The Top 51 Winter Holiday Characters
« Reply #44 on: December 21, 2011, 01:01:31 PM »
Isn't there anyone who knows all about


#36 - St. Lucy
?


Prof.Linus Van Pelt
Sure,  I can tell you all about St. Lucy

Lights, please: Saint Lucy (283–304), also known as Saint Lucia or Santa Lucia, was a wealthy young Christian martyr who is venerated as a saint by Roman Catholic Church, Anglican, Lutheran, and Orthodox Christians. Her feast day in the West is 13 December; with a name derived from Lux, Lucis meaning "Light", as she is the patron saint of those who are blind. Saint Lucy is one of the few saints celebrated by members of the Lutheran Church among the Scandinavian peoples, who take part in Saint Lucy's Day celebrations that retain many elements of Germanic paganism.

Saint Lucy is one of seven women, aside from the Blessed Virgin Mary, commemorated by name in the Canon of the Mass. Hagiography tells us that Lucy was a Christian martyr during the Diocletian persecution. She consecrated her virginity to God through pious works refused to marry a pagan betrothed, and had her wedding dowry distributed to the poor. Her betrothed pagan groom denounced her as a Christian to the governor of Syracuse, Sicily. Miraculously unable to move her or burn her, the guards took out her eyes with a fork. In another version, Lucy's betrothed admired her eyes, so she tore them out and gave them to him, saying, "Now let me live to God".

The oldest record of her story comes from the fifth-century accounts of saints' lives. By the 6th century, her story was widespread, so that she appears in the Sacramentary of Pope Gregory I. At the opening of the 8th century Aldhelm included a brief account of her life among the virgins praised in De laude virginitatis, and in the following century the Venerable Bede included her in his Martyrology. In medieval accounts, Saint Lucy's eyes are gouged out prior to her execution. In art, her eyes sometimes appear on a tray that she is holding.

Until 1861 relics of Saint Lucy were venerated in a church dedicated to her in Venice; after its demolition, they were transferred to the church of San Geremia.
The Roman Catholic calendar of saints formerly had a commemoration of Saints Lucy and Geminianus on 16 September. This was removed in 1969, as a duplication of the feast of her dies natalis on 13 December and because the Geminianus in question, mentioned in the Passio of Saint Lucy, seems to be a merely fictitious figure,[2] unrelated to the Geminianus whose feast is on 31 January.

Lucy's Latin name Lucia shares a root (luc-) with the Latin word for light, lux. "In 'Lucy' is said, the way of light" Jacobus de Voragine stated at the beginning of his vita of the Blessed Virgin Lucy, in Legenda Aurea, the most widely-read version of the Lucy legend in the Middle Ages.

Because people wanted to shed light on Lucy's bravery and fortitude, legends grew up, reported in the acts that are associated with her name. All the details are conventional ones also associated with other female martyrs of the early 4th century. Her Roman father died when she was young, leaving her and her mother without a protecting guardian. Her mother, Eutychia, had suffered four years with dysentery but Lucy had heard the renown of Saint Agatha, the patroness of Catania, "and when they were at a Mass, one read a gospel that made mention of a woman who was healed of the dysentery by touching of the hem of the coat of Jesus Christ," which, according to the Legenda Aurea, convinced her mother to pray together at Saint Agatha's tomb. They stayed up all night praying, until they fell asleep, exhausted. Saint Agatha appeared in a vision to Lucy and said, "Soon you shall be the glory of Syracuse, as I am of Catania." At that instant Eutychia was cured.

Eutychia had arranged a marriage for Lucy with a pagan bridegroom, but Lucy urged that the dowry be spent on alms so that she might retain her virginity. Euthychia suggested that the sums would make a good bequest, but Lucy countered, "...whatever you give away at death for the Lord's sake you give because you cannot take it with you. Give now to the true Savior, while you are healthy, whatever you intended to give away at your death." News that the patrimony and jewels were being distributed came to the ears of Lucy's betrothed, who heard from a chattering nurse that Lucy had found a nobler Bridegroom.

Her rejected pagan bridegroom denounced Lucy as a Christian to the magistrate Paschasius, who ordered her to burn a sacrifice to the emperor's image. Lucy replied that she had given all that she had: "I offer to Him myself, let Him do with His offering as it pleases Him." Sentenced to be defiled in a brothel, Lucy asserted:
“   No one's body is polluted so as to endanger the soul if it has not pleased the mind. If you were to lift my hand to your idol and so make me offer against my will, I would still be guiltless in the sight of the true God, who judges according to the will and knows all things. If now, against my will, you cause me to be polluted, a twofold purity will be gloriously imputed to me. You cannot bend my will to your purpose; whatever you do to my body, that cannot happen to me.   ”

The Christian tradition states that when the guards came to take her away they found her so filled with the Holy Spirit that she was as stiff and heavy as a mountain; they could not move her even when they hitched her to a team of oxen. Even after implanting a dagger through her throat she prophesied against her persecutor. Unfounded, and absent in the many narratives and traditions, at least until the 15th century, is the story of Lucia tortured by eye-gouging. The emblem of the eyes on the cup, or plate, must be linked simply to popular devotion to her, as protector of sight, because of her name, Lucia (from the latin word "lux" which means "light"). In paintings St. Lucy is frequently shown holding her eyes on a golden plate.

Lucy was represented in Gothic art holding a dish with two eyes on it (illustration above). The legend concludes with God restoring Lucy's eyes.

Dante also mentions Lucia in Inferno Canto II as the messenger "of all cruelty the foe" sent to Beatrice from "The blessed Dame" (Divine Mercy), to rouse Beatrice to send Virgil to Dante's aid. She has instructed Virgil to guide Dante through Hell and Purgatory. Lucia is only referenced indirectly in Virgil's discourse within the narrative and doesn't appear. According to Robert Harrison, Professor in Italian Literature at Stanford University and Rachel Jacoff, Professor of Italian Studies at Wellesley, Lucia's appearance in this intermediary role is to reinforce the scene in which Virgil attempts to fortify Dante's courage to begin the journey through the Inferno.

Lucy may also be seen as a figure of Illuminating Grace or Mercy or even Justice. Nonetheless Dante obviously regarded Lucia with great reverence, placing her opposite Adam within the Mystic Rose in Canto XXXII of the Paradiso.

In Mark Musa's translation of Dante's Purgatorio, it is noted that Lucy was admired by an undesirable suitor for her beautiful eyes. To stay chaste she plucked out her own eyes, a great sacrifice for which God gave her a pair of even more beautiful eyes. It is said in Sweden that to vividly celebrate St. Lucy's Day will help one live the long winter days with enough light.

Lucy's name also played a large part in naming Lucy as a patron saint of the blind and those with eye-trouble. She was the patroness of Syracuse in Sicily, Italy.
Sigebert (1030–1112), a monk of Gembloux, in his sermo de Sancta Lucia, chronicled that her body lay undisturbed in Sicily for 400 years, before Faroald II, Duke of Spoleto, captured the island and transferred the body to Corfinium in the Abruzzo, Italy. From there it was removed by the Emperor Otho I in 972 to Metz and deposited in the church of St. Vincent. It was from this shrine that an arm of the saint was taken to the monastery of Luitburg in the Diocese of Speyer - an incident celebrated by Sigebert himself in verse.

The subsequent history of the relics is not clear. On their capture of Constantinople in 1204, the French found some relics attributed to Saint Lucy in the city, and Enrico Dandolo, Doge of Venice, secured them for the monastery of St. George at Venice. In 1513 the Venetians presented to Louis XII of France the saint's head, which he deposited in the cathedral church of Bourges. Another account, however, states that the head was brought to Bourges from Rome where it had been transferred during the time when the relics rested in Corfinium. The remainder of the relics remain in Venice: they were transferred to the church of San Geremia when the church of Santa Lucia was demolished in the 19th century to make way for the new railway terminus. A century later, on 7 November 1981, thieves stole all her bones, except her head. Police recovered them five weeks later, on her feast day. Other parts of the corpse have found their way to Rome, Naples, Verona, Lisbon, Milan, as well as Germany and France.

Her brief day was commonly thought to be the shortest day of the year, as can be seen in John Donne's poem, "A Nocturnal upon St. Lucie's Day, being the shortest day" (1627). The poem begins with: "'Tis the year's midnight, and it is the day's," and expresses, in a mourning piece, the withdrawal of the world-spirit into sterility and darkness, where "The world's whole sap is sunk.”

This timing, and her name meaning light, is a factor in the particular devotion to St. Lucy in Scandinavian countries, where young girls dress as the saint in honor of the feast. A special devotion to St. Lucy is present in the Italian regions of Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna, Veneto, Trentino-Alto Adige, in the North of the country, and Sicily, in the South.

The feast is a Catholic celebrated holiday with roots that can be traced back to Sicily. On 13th of every December it is celebrated with large traditional feasts of home made pasta and various other Italian dishes, with a special dessert of wheat in hot chocolate milk. The large grains of soft wheat are representative of her eyes and are a treat only to be indulged in once a year.

In Omaha, Nebraska, the Santa Lucia Festival is celebrated each summer. It was founded in 1925 by Italian Immigrant Grazia Buonafede Caniglia, and continues to this day. A statue of Saint Lucy is paraded through the streets of downtown Omaha, along with a First class relic, made of the physical body of Saint Lucy.

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Festival: Christmas (Santa Lucia)
Total Points: 26
2/12 Lists
Highest Placement: 5 (Tripe)