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Offert of candles to Saint Margaret

Offert of candles to Saint Margaret

from the “Cortona Statute” of the year 1325:
The festivities of Saint Mark and Saint Margaret were particularly solemn.
A few days before their recurrence, the Council of the Hundred would decide on how to celebrate them. Three gentlemen nominated by the vicar decided on the weight of the wax that guilds and villas had to offer: every rural household would pay 6 deniers for the oblation to Saint Mark and 4 for the one to Saint Margaret. These compulsory offers were received and guarded by three other gentlemen, who would get fined 20 pennies, like the offers, if the wax being offered and accepted was less than the established weight.

Then the Council would order and the vicar would approve to use part of the wax and sell part of it to the benefit of the two churches.
“A huge number of worshippers would come from out of town to the celebration of Saint Margaret, so the Council would always deliberate on how to guard the city and order extra guards. Male visitors were hosted by citizens, whereas women were hosted in churches. The City would provide 20 measures of straw for their bedding in homes and churches, as well as 25 measures of thinly-cut wood to be donated to visitors who asked for it.

The vicar watched over the supply of bread, the increase in food prices and kept one of his notaries near Saint Basilio to guard the city, to check on the guests and to allow only guards to linger overnight around the church of Saint Margaret. The penalty for all crimes committed was doubled.

Twelve jousters chosen by the vicar would joust with weapons and flags provided by the City and donated to the Church at the end of the festivity”. Around the time of vesper, the vicar and the officials, together with the city councillors, rectors and council members of the guilds, the clergy and friars would go on a procession from the square of the town hall to the Church of Saint Margaret to offer two candles of 4 pounds each (from chapter XX pages 48 and 49 of “The Cortona Statute of the Year 1325” Cortona city library, Mancini publisher 1963, “Cortona nel Medio Evo”, Florence 1894).