The ancient origins of the Bonfires of San Juan (Las Hogueras de San Juan)
One of the most important religious holidays of Spain is the Nativity of John the Baptist. In the night from 23 to 24 June across the country lit "Bonfires of San Juan" or otherwise called this holiday "Bonfire Night". This ancient Slavic holiday similar to the Day of Ivan Kupala, which is celebrated in the night of June 24. Even before the Catholic religion, this pagan ritual was known in various parts of the Mediterranean and Northern Europe, when on the night of the summer solstice throughout lit bonfires of weeds, junk and animal carcasses to scare off evil spirits and disease, and in return ask the Gods to grant prosperity and a good harvest.
In the EIGHTEENTH century, this tradition had moved from the countryside to the city, and in 1928 was recognized in Alicante as an official holiday. The Spaniards love this summer holiday and celebrate it magnificently. Especially colorfully celebrate "Bonfire Night" in Barcelona, constructed in advance of huge effigies made of papier-mâché and the culmination of the holiday is burning. The festivities last all night, put on the table and some wine. In addition to bonfires fireworks and make colorful fire show.
The Spaniards believe this night is magic, water is healing, herbs acquire miraculous properties, fire casts out the evil spirits, the girls meet narrowed and reigns peace and love.