Corpus Christi | Cultural Heritage. Goverment of Catalonia.
Corpus Christi From the worship of the Blessed Sacrament to the festive celebration

In the Middle Ages, the town combined Christian practices with rituals of pagan origin. As a reaction, the feast of Corpus Christi, a new celebration in honour of the Blessed Sacrament, was born, which over time lost much of its religious character and became a social event and festival.

The first celebrations of Corpus Christi in Catalonia were those of Barcelona (1320), Manresa (1322), Vic (1330), Tortosa (1330), Solsona (1331) and Bagà (1333). The festival revolved around the triumphal procession of the Blessed Sacrament through the streets and squares of towns and cities.

The hierarchy and protocol, vital to the organisation of the Corpus, from the beginning co-existed with farcical interludes. These Christianisations of pagan elements sought to moralise and educate those who saw the procession, but in the end the playful overcame the instructive. This facilitated the appearance of the "bullícies" of the Blessed Sacrament, the origin of the Patum de Berga.

Other characteristic elements of the Corpus are the Ou com Balla, an empty egg that rises and dances as if by magic on the jet of water of a fountain, and carpets of flowers, ephemeral works of art that were trampled on by the procession and that survive in towns like Sitges, Arbúcies and la Garriga.