Built and carried by tradesmen of the town, towering steeple-like structures, 100-feet high, were carried through the streets of Nola, near Naples, Italy, June 26 during the festival of St.
Built and carried by tradesmen of the town, towering steeple-like structures, 100-feet high, were carried through the streets of Nola, near Naples, Italy, June 26 during the festival of St.Paulinus- first Archbishop of the town, and much beloved by the people.
Each of the eight structures ("Lilies") represents the patron saint of tailors, shoe-makers, bakers, butchers, blacksmiths, barbers, wine shop keeper and delicatessen store keepers. Weighing two and a half tons, the "Lilies" were each shouldered by a hundred men and taken in procession through narrow streets gay with dancing and music, to the town square to be admired by the people of Nola and the many tourists who visit the town annually to see this spectacle.
In the centre of the "Lilies" was a boat--symbolic of the one by which St.Paulinus returned to Nola after captivity in Africa. Imprisoned by the Moors, he was eventually returned by their King-- also represented on the boat by a statue.
A great benefactor, he supported the poor, built churches, and lived a semi-monastic life. His appointment - in response to public demand - as Archbishop in 409, was an unusual occurrence even for those days. Son of a Prefect of Gaul, he was born in Bordeaux, France, and spend his early life in public service. Later he was baptized and ordained priest, eventually settling in Hola where he owned land.