The Festivities of San Froilán are regarded as the most traditional of the ones celebrated in Leon, since they are an expression of the roots and culture of the city; a living expression of an event that goes back to the Middle Ages. They are an ideal moment to relive the Processions of the Virgen del Camino, enjoy the beauty of the Carros Engalanados, wonder at the largest grouping of banners in the province and participate once again in the debate of the tribute of the 100 Damsels 100, the unforgettable Foro u Oferta de Las Cantaderas, unique symbols of our history and very special character.
THE STORY OF THE SAINT
San Froilán was born in the province of Lugo in 833, and studied until he was 18 years old, when he decided to become a hermit, and retired to the Gruta de Ruiterlán in the Bierzo region, which is now a hermitage, before going onto the Leonese mountains of the Curueño. His life was marked by a number of events. One of the most important of these was meeting the Mozarabic priest from Tarazona, Atilano, with whom he would commence a monastic life and reforms of the hermitages. Vicente, the bishop of Leon, died in 900 and the people asked King Alfonso III to make Froilán the new bishop, while Atilano was named bishop of Zamora on the day of the Pentecost. The king and all the court attended the ceremonies, which gives one an idea of the importance of the saint at the time. Five years later he died in Leon, on 5 October, and was buried in the Cathedral or the old church of Santa María, in a sumptuous tomb built for him by Alfonso III. The chronicles of the period mention that “the devote residents of Leon cried bitterly for having lost the holy shepherd Froilán…”.
From 5 to 9 October the city lives in an atmosphere of ancient and medieval inspiration, with markets of the period where visitors can enjoy exhibitions of falconry, workshops of traditional crafts, hundreds of attractive stalls and all kinds of theatrical events. There are other fairs dedicated to flowers, pottery and ceramics. The streets fill with medieval banners and flags, stalls to sample local products, street musicians, carts bedecked with decorations and exhibitions of regional sports. San Froilán is also a time to let the imagination run riot, to let children discover the Jardín Encantado (Enchanted Garden), or for young people to enjoy modern music in the many concerts held in the city plazas. San Froilán in our city has its own special feel and personality, making these days the ideal occasion for visitors who come for the first time to Leon to discover a welcoming, beautiful city full of history and tradition.
DATE OF THE EVENT
Held in October 5th