The Battenti di San Pellegrino (Barefoot Confreres of San Pellegrino) is an ancient and important devotional ritual that has taken place in Altavilla Irpina on 24 August since 1780, on the occasion of the patron saint's celebrations.
During this event, thousands of devotees - called “battenti” (barefoot confreres) or fujenti - walk barefoot, stamping their feet in the hot sun to pay homage to the patron saint with flowers and candles. Dressed in white, with the symbolic red sash handed down from father to son, they arrive in the town from the very early hours of the morning and proceed along the main streets, heading towards the Sanctuary of the Saint Martyrs Pellegrino and Alberico Crescitelli where, entering one by one, they renew their vow to the religious figure.
The cult of Saint Pellegrino is widespread not only in Altavilla Irpina but also in other towns in the Province of Avellino and the Metropolitan City of Naples. Not surprisingly, the procession of Altavilla draws eight other sections of Barefoot Confreres, from: Avella, Baiano, Manocalzati, Montefredane, Mugnano del Cardinale, Avellino (hamlet of Picarelli), Roccarainola and Summonte (hamlet of Starze).
The procession of the Battenti di San Pellegrino is, even today, a unique emotional event, capable of attracting thousands of devotees and visitors.
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*currently suspended due to Covid-19
Piazza IV Novembre, 83011 Altavilla Irpina AV, Italia
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