Friday, January 6, 2012

The three Holy Kings.

In Spain, children aren't' given their presents in Christmas day, they are in Kings' Day. That is in the mornig of the 6th. of January. This has to do with the influence of Catholic Church in our country, in past days. As the Three Magic Kings are said to have taken presents of Gold, Incense and Myrrh to the newborn Jesus, children are given presents this day, provided they have been good in the preceeding year.Children write a letter to the Kings and ask for what they would love to be given.

And in the night of January the 5th., all children and their parents go to welcome the Three Magic Kings who visit their town to accomplish their so important mission. And so have done again today in the small village where I live.

Someone even was wearing white Angel wings... and a blue cap!

There is a tradition that belongs specifically to this place. While attending for the Kigs to arrive, parents and children light fires that burn big bunches of dried lavender. I think in old days this was meant to guide the Three Kings to the village, with the help of the small flames shining in the night, and of the purifying odour of burning lavender.

Children also make and light paper lanterns, with the help of their parents.

This year, the Magic Kings' Caravan was open by an Angel in the first carriage.

Then, according to the tradition, came the White King, as children call him.

The Kings wear rich clothings, throw candies to children and wave hands! 

The White-haired King exhibited wintery blue and purple hues, together with white, black and sparkles of gold and red.

After him came the Blond King, wearing traditional Chirstmas colours: red, green and gold.

And in last but not least place, the Black King, by far the children's favourite since I have memory as a child.  And it's still the same today.

All children are wishing to talk to him and tell him they have been good enough to deserve their presents!

As you can see, all the Kings' robes and carriages' garments were in rich jewel tones, according to their rank. I'm willing to create some royal color palettes as soon as I can!

After welcoming the Three Kings, children go home and must go to sleep soon after dinner. If they are awake when the Kings go to visit them, might be they would not be given any presents! When I was a child my parents always left some dry bread and a bowl filled with water in the balcony, to feed the royal camels. I assumed that as the Kings were magicians, the camels could fly to a fourth flat and they could open the doors and come into all the houses. Once, I heard the camel's bells ringing... and was lucky enough to stay absolutely quiet in bed! At home there was always some sweet wine and biscuits for the Kings to eat and drink. Their's was a hard work: they had to visit all the children in the world in one only night to bring them their presents. It was fair to help them have a rest and get their strength back. And in the morning, the first thing we did was to check that camels had eaten bread and drunk water. Then, findig where the Kings had left our presents was a happy game!

Now that I'm a grown up, I love to go to welcome the Kings with my son. And this day, which means the closing of Christmas Season for us, still makes me feel joyful! 


  1. Great post, Isabel! I had no idea... I think your tale about the three holy kings fits right into a blog entry I wrote last year about interesting holiday traditions from my country. Seriously, someone should write a big, colorful, beautiful coffee table book about these traditions from all over the world - they are so amazing! Here is a link to my traditions, if you're interested!

  2. Hi, Anna:

    thank you so much for leaving your comment! I have visited your blog and will add it to my blogroll.I will read about your traditions, I love them. And this book on traditions would be a great idea!I'm glad when I see that friendships go farther than Facebook!