Festival Museum (Bocairent)

The fiestas of Mores and Christians (Moros y Cristianos) make up a substantial part of village life. Hence this museum, which explains the history of Bocairent’s principal festival.

The museum holds displays of the clothing, fiesta programmes, musical scores, etc of the nine participating groups. Using illustrations, graphic and didactic material it provides a history of one of the oldest Mores and Christians festivals in existence.

The fiesta is made up of nine “filaes” (participating groups): Espanyoletos, Granaderos, Contrabandistas, Tercio de Suavos, Estudiantes, Moros Viejos, Marrocs, Moros Marinos and Mosqueteros.

The festival format is common to all villages celebrating this traditional fiesta. On the first day, 2nd February, the “Entrance” (Entrada) of the Mores and Christians takes place. The following day is dedicated to the patron saint (Saint Blai), with a religious service and a procession. On the third day all the blunderbusses are shot off before the “Embassies” (“Ambaixades”) or negotiations occur between the two rival bands. The fourth day is celebrated with another mass at the Chapel of the Holy Christ (Santo Cristo) and the representation of the “Dispossession of the More” (“Despojo del Moro”). The festival has a prologue on the night of 1st February, known as the “Night of the Boxes” (“La Nit de les Caixes”), when a procession of lanterns accompanied by the beating of drums commemorates the proclamation of Saint Blai as the patron saint of the town.