fiera dei morti

/FYEH-rah deh-ee MOHR-tee/

"Fair of the dead." All Souls’ Fair. These are particularly famous in Perugia, where there are records from 1260, and in Palermo. In Perugia it was for a while called the 'fiera dei defunti' and the celebrations include the custom of eating sweets with names such as stinchetti (shinbones), ossi di morto (bones of the dead), and fave dei morti (beans of the dead). In Palermo, the fiera dei morti is celebrated in the streets in the vicinity of the Archaeological Museum, were stalls and barrows are heaped with chestnuts and walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds, pomegranates and torrone, with sweets, dried figs and the brightly coloured frutta dei morti.

The commemoration of all the faithful departed is celebrated by the Church of Rome on 2 November, or, if this be a Sunday or a solemnity, on 3 November. The Office of the Dead must be recited by the clergy and all the Masses are to be of Requiem, except one of the current feast, where this is of obligation. The theological basis for the feast is the doctrine that the souls which, on departing from the body, are not perfectly cleansed from venial sins, or have not fully atoned for past transgressions, are debarred from the Beatific Vision, and that the faithful on earth can help them by prayers, almsdeedsand especially by the sacrifice of the Mass. In the Greek Rite this commemoration is held on the eve of Sexagisima Sunday or on the eve of Pentectost. The Armenians celebrate the passover of the dead on the day after Easter.