St. Bartholomew Fair 2014, August 22-23

The history of local guilds has not been presented in a proper way in Vilnius up to present. It is very modestly reflected in the exposition of the Lithuanian National Museum, too, though there are quite a lot of craftsmen’s articles of different times in its stacks. At the initiative of the Public Institution “Amatu Gildija” the old tradition of Vilnius, i.e. a festal craft fair in commemoration of St. Bartholomew’s Day – the 24th of August – was resurrected in 2009.

St. Bartholomew Fair lasting for two days starts with the solemn procession of all participating craftsmen carrying historical guild flags from Aušros Vartai (The Gate of Dawn) down Vokiečių, Dominikonų, Šv. Jonų, Pilies streets towards the Town Hall Square. The procession is led by knights on the horses and accompanied by music performing ensembles. Demonstration of crafts and trade in reconstructed wares of the 15-17th centuries lasts for entire two days. The fair several times throughout the day is interspersed with performances of invited theatres, medieval music and dance groups from Lithuania and foreign countries, shows of Renaissance costumes, demonstration of fighting elements of the Middle Ages and different games known from the 15-17th centuries.

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