It is August 15th, and every Italian knows that it means: Festa! Ferragosto has become one of the most important dates for a family to unite and celebrate, often by taking summer vacation.
Historically Ferragosto was included in the ancient Roman summer celebrations. The name comes from the old Latin Feriae Augusti (the solemn celebrations of Emperor Augustus, first Roman emperor), introduced in 18 BC. In the Christian era, the Catholic Church celebrates the Assumption of the Virgin Mary into Heaven. Today, this mid-summer holiday sums both influences: ancient Roman and Catholic traditions.
Ferragosto also has a strong tradition of historical games like the renowned Palio in Siena, Italy’s most famous horse race, held twice each year, on July 2 and August 16. We wish everyone a Buon Ferragosto!