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Spain: Babies purified by the Devil's Leap00:54

Spain: Babies purified by the Devil's Leap

Spain, Castrillo de Murcia
June 3, 2013 at 01:29 GMT +00:00 · Published

Spain: Babies purified by the Devil's Leap

The festival of El Colacho or Devil's Leap was celebrated in the northern Spanish town of Castrillo de Murcia on Sunday, with the traditional baby leap taking centre stage. A character named El Colacho, a man covered with a mask and yellow clothing with a red trim, performs a ritual where he jumps over babies as a means to purify their souls.

People believe this tradition will get rid of evil, which will create a path to a good life and access to heaven. This traditional event is not only thought to rid babies of their original sin but also to purify the whole town. The man represents evil as he runs after villagers, hitting them with a horse tail, while others insult him.

The annual festival, which dates back to 1620, also marks the Catholic feast of Corpus Christi, which comes two weeks after Pentecost. In the town's central square parents dress up their babies and place them on mattresses on the ground.

After the procession, the villagers gather in Las Eras (threshing ground), where they drink wine and eat cheese with bread, accompanied by a band of traditional musicians.

Spain: Babies purified by the Devil's Leap00:54
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Description

Spain: Babies purified by the Devil's Leap

The festival of El Colacho or Devil's Leap was celebrated in the northern Spanish town of Castrillo de Murcia on Sunday, with the traditional baby leap taking centre stage. A character named El Colacho, a man covered with a mask and yellow clothing with a red trim, performs a ritual where he jumps over babies as a means to purify their souls.

People believe this tradition will get rid of evil, which will create a path to a good life and access to heaven. This traditional event is not only thought to rid babies of their original sin but also to purify the whole town. The man represents evil as he runs after villagers, hitting them with a horse tail, while others insult him.

The annual festival, which dates back to 1620, also marks the Catholic feast of Corpus Christi, which comes two weeks after Pentecost. In the town's central square parents dress up their babies and place them on mattresses on the ground.

After the procession, the villagers gather in Las Eras (threshing ground), where they drink wine and eat cheese with bread, accompanied by a band of traditional musicians.

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