The Magic of Tenerife - issue #17
April 1st, 2012


This is your genial webmaster John with the latest Tenerife Information Centre Newsletter!

In this month's issue, we'll be taking a look at:

- How Easter is Calculated
- Tegueste's Famous Festival
- Website new pages, updates and questions since last newsletter


Calculating Easter Dates

As you all know, Easter falls on different dates every year. Now, you'd think that, if Christ's crucifixion and subsequent resurrection fell on specific dates, then these should be fixed for subsequent years, like Christmas, for example. But it's not as simple as that.

It all starts with the date of the Last Supper, which took place at Passover, in the Jewish calendar. Passover is celebrated when there is the paschal full moon, which happens some time after the spring equinox (March 20th or 21st). How long after varies from year to year, due to the erratic phases of the moon.

So, you watch out for the first full moon to occur after March 21st, then Easter will fall on the following Sunday.

Church councils have been pondering on Easter dates since the Council of Nicaea, in 325AD. They were still discussing things as recently as 1997.

This year, Easter Sunday will fall on April 8th.


Romeria de San Marcos

San Marcos Evangelista, known in English as St Mark the Evangelist, is generally considered to be the Mark who wrote the second Gospel and the Roman Catholic church holds a feast day in his honour every April 25th.

The Romeria, or festival, dedicated to him is celebrated on the nearest Sunday to that date - this year, the 29th.

One of the most remarkable and noteworthy of these fiestas is held at the sleepy, traditional village of Tegueste, in the north of the island. Usually a very quiet place, on this one occasion it becomes very raucous, as thousands of people celebrate with processions, song and dance.

The main procession, starting at 1pm, consists of carts drawn by oxen or other animals of burden. The creation of these carts by the villagers is a time-honoured ritual in its own right. Adorned with side panels with scenes depicting rural life, they represent the village's ancient agricultural tradition. Some are dressed to resemble 17th and 18th century sailing ships, representing the many attacks from pirates that the village suffered.

As the floats pass by, the crowds try to attract the attention of the people, dressed in traditional garb, riding on them. They respond by throwing, or handing out items of farm produce, such as eggs, meat, potatoes - and, more importantly, wine!

After the procession, everyone repairs to the main village plaza, lined with kiosks for the occasion, where music is played and all the revellers have a good old dance.

A fiesta well worth attending!


Tenerife Information Centre
New and Updated Pages and Questions Since Last Newsletter

New Pages

Posted Questions


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This is John signing off. See you next month!

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