Today, Easter Wednesday, Lent finishes; the moment that ends a difficult 40 days of fasting.
In case you didn’t know, in its origins Holy Week was a form of penitence, of sentence. In fact, the typical cone-shaped hats of the Nazarenes that are frequently worn in the processions have their origins in those sentenced to die by the Inquisition. Originally, the hat would have been decorated with illustrations of the crimes the convict was found guilty of. Its elongated shape was supposed to reduce the distance between the penitent prisoner and their imminent place in heaven!
As fasting finishes today, you can find a huge range of typical sweets in all the pastry shops. In times past, in order to combine faithful fasting with hard physical work in the fields, agricultural workers needed a little sugar. Over time, these little sugary treats evolved into the famous Easter sweets and cakes.
In Alicante province, among many others, the best known processions are those of Crevillente, he famous Palm Sunday in Elche, and the procession of the Gypsy Christ in Santa Cruz.