Detalle Publicación

Theatre and Holy Week: the configuration of Spanish penitential procession in the 16th century

Título de la revista: HIPOGRIFO
ISSN: 2328-1308
Volumen: 10
Número: 2
Páginas: 847 - 862
Fecha de publicación: 2022
In the 16th century the first Spanish penitential brotherhoods were born, normally those of the Vera Cruz (True Cross) and later of the Nazarene. Their main external expression was the evening procession on Maundy Thursday or during the night to Good Friday, where from very early on stage depictions or remembrances of the Passion of Christ would appear, particularly on the way to Calvary, along with several secondary characters, such as Jews, Pharisees, Romans, etc. Following on from ancient use, the characters would cover their faces with a mask or face. Little by little, because of a certain reverential fear, the main characters, Christ and the Virgin, were eventually replaced by inanimate images. However, they continued to play their role in those sacred dramas of a folk character which were performed throughout the Peninsula, despite repeated bans from the ecclesiastical authorities. They formed a comprehensive show, a global sort of sacred performance, with an extraordinary visual, aesthetic and emotional impact. The present article therefore intends to establish a relationship between the earlier Holy Week processions and the remains of sacred theatre that have survived the continuous ecclesiastical bans.