A DEVOTIONAL SICILIAN CAKE: I CUDDUREDDI

Visiting Enna without seeing the Sanctuary of Papardura is like visiting Palermo without seeing Monreale. It is a unique place. No tour guide can skip it.

On September 13 and 14, there is a special festival. Both gates to the sanctuary are open and the faithful make special devotional cakes called cuddureddi. They are made of water and flower and have a special shape, for they look like intertwined rings. They are also hard to eat.

The cuddureddi date back to Demeter’s time. Once people decorated them with poppy seeds. These days they are plain, for the poppy was too reminiscent of the pagan goddess Demeter to whom it was sacred.

Inside the church, above the altar, is the holy image of Jesus on the Calvary, imprinted on the rock. Both the altar and the church are a continuation of the cave where long ago the holy image was found.

According to a historian from Enna, called Father Giovanni, in the year 1659 Jesus appeared to a Franciscan nun and asked her to clean a cave in Papardura because there was his image on the rock. The cave was cleaned and actually, the image of Jesus appeared.

Apart from its sacredness, the place deserves to be visited for its beauty and for the landscape in which it is inserted.

Ettore Grillo author of these books:

– November 2: The Day of the Dead in Sicily

– A Hidden Sicilian History

– The Vibrations of Words

– Travels of the Mind

http://www.amazon.com/author/ettoregrillo

IMPORTANT DISCOVERY BY THE SCOUTS OF ENNA (SICILY)

The girls and boys of the Enna Scout group Agesci 1 fully deserve to be called Scouts, for they have explored the slopes of Enna from a height of one thousand meters to the bottom of the valley and have brought to light the ancient “Via Sacra” (The Sacred Way), which is the old sacred way that, before Christianity, pilgrims walked to visit the temple of Demeter.

Man has always believed that the Deity lived either in the sky or on top of some mountain. Think of Mount Olympus, for example. It was natural that the temple of Demeter was located in a mountain, in Enna.

Demeter was the goddess of the crops and was invoked to have a good harvest. It is said that during time of famine, even the Senate of Rome used to send a delegation to Enna to propitiate the goddess.

Along the Sacred Way there were sacred shrines and also small cisterns of water for purification rites. This is now visible and can be visited thanks to the Scouts of Enna that had brought to light this archaeological treasure.

I thank Sir Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell, founder of the Scout movement, because thanks to his initiative, boys and girls can grow up in accordance with the universal principles of love for nature, research, and above all friendship.

Ettore Grillo author of these books:

– November 2: The Day of the Dead in Sicily

– A Hidden Sicilian History

– The Vibrations of Words

– Travels of the Mind

http://www.amazon.com/author/ettoregrillo

THE SANCTUARY OF THE HOLY CRUCIFIX OF PAPARDURA IN ENNA (SICILY)

For a place to have the title of “Sanctuary”, it must be surrounded by an air of legend about the discovery of a sacred object or a miracle that happened there, and of course it is necessary that people feel the sacredness of the place and make pilgrimages.

The Sanctuary of Papardura, deserves this title.

It is said that towards the middle of the seventeenth century some peasants who lived in the fields around Enna saw a light on the top of the Papardura cave at night. They set out for the cave but when they arrived, the light disappeared.

It is also said that in the year 1659, a Franciscan nun had the vision of Jesus crucified who asked her to have the cave of Papardura cleaned because there was his effigy inside. The cave was cleaned up and the image found. Then, a church was built in front of the cave.

Miracles took place there, as evidenced by the items that pilgrims left in thanksgiving for the graces they had received.

On 12 September, the day of the feast of the Crucifix of Papardura, the administrators of the sanctuary distribute special sweets, called “Cuddureddi”, to the visitors. They date back to the time of the Goddess Demeter. The only difference is that the “Cuddureddi” are no longer garnished with poppy seeds, a flower that was sacred to Demeter. After all, the religious spirit remains unchanged, from the pagan era to the present day!

Ettore Grillo author of these books:

– November 2: The Day of the Dead in Sicily

– A Hidden Sicilian History

– The Vibrations of Words

– Travels of the Mind

http://www.amazon.com/author/ettoregrillo

THE ORIGIN OF THE ITALIAN LANGUAGE

There is no doubt that the Italian language was born in Sicily in the thirteenth century at the time of the Sicilian School of poetry whose main exponent was Iacopo da Lentini, the inventor of the sonnet.

A sonnet is a poem made up of fourteen rhyming lines: two quatrains and two triplets.

With the permission of Iacopo da Lentini, I dare to translate one of his sonnets into English. Of course, there are no rhymes in the English version. I hope Iacopo da Lentini will forgive me for my amateur translation.

AMOR E’ UNO DESIO CHE VEN DA CORE

Amore è uno desio che ven da core

Per abbondanza di gran piacimento;

E li occhi in prima generan l’amore

E lo core li dà nutricamento

Ben è alcuna fiata om amatore

Senza vedere so ‘namoramento

Ma quell’amor che stringe con furore

Da la vista de li occhi ha nascimento:

Ché li occhi rappresentan a lo core

D’ogni cosa che veden bono  e rio

Com’è formata naturalmente;

E lo cor, che di zo è concepitore,

Imagina, e li piace quel desio:

E questo amore regna fra la gente.

LOVE IS A DESIRE THAT COMES FROM THE HEART

Love is a desire that comes from the heart

Because of abundance of pleasure;

The eyes first generate love

And then, the heart nourishes it.

It is possible that sometimes a man loves

Without seeing the loved one,

But that love that grabs him with fury

Comes from the sight of the eyes:

Because the eyes show to the heart

The good and evil of everything

As it is naturally made of;

And the heart that receives the message (of the eyes)

Dreams and enjoys that desire:

And this is human love.

Ettore Grillo author of these books:

– November 2: The Day of the Dead in Sicily

– A Hidden Sicilian History

– The Vibrations of Words

– Travels of the Mind

http://www.amazon.com/author/ettoregrillo