Partir la Vieja

Partir la Vieja
This is a medieval custom that has survived only in a few places in the province of Alicante. Callosa del Segura is the only corner of the Vega Baja area which keeps the old custom of celebrating the "Division of the Old Lent". In each of these places, the tradition has a different name, but all of them put some natural size dolls called 'viejotes' (oldies), made with household materials, most of the time with some critical cartel on a current topic and the same goal: the popular celebration of the middle of the old rigid Lent and the proximity of its end. Many old people in Callosa mimic with the clothes of the 'viejotes' the hemp workers (splitters, rakers, etc.) and place them in the windows and balconies of workshops. Hemp tow and waste are usually the materials used in refilling the dolls. The costume was that, in cheerful bustle and camaraderie, many residents make life-size 'viejotes' dressed up in dark clothes which gives them an old appearance. Then, they used to sit them in wicker chairs or armchairs with some critic poster referring to topical issues. They are usually placed on the doors of houses or on balconies, from morning till evening with popular rejoicing. There was some custom that sometimes a person would dress up as a 'viejote' and sat beside them immovably until some curious came close to examining how well the dolls were done. At this time, the disguised prankster gave a good scare to the unsuspecting visitors who would leave laughing or shouting. Today, the tradition remains in its forms but is fuelled by the lure of the institutional visit usually done in a committee composed of the Ladies of the Festival, the Municipal Rondalla, members of the Municipal Council of Culture together with the Councillor and general public visiting and tasting this peculiar Lent tradition in Callosa de Segura.
  • Details:
  • Town: Callosa de Segura
  • Tercer miércoles tras el miércoles de ceniza. Marca el ecuador de la Cuaresma

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