Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Funerals for the unfortunate sardines in Tenerife

Mourners at the Burial of the Sardine

Tonight, Ash Wednesday, 14 February, the blasphemous and irreverent funerals of two unfortunate sardines in take place Santa Cruz de Tenerife and in Puerto de la Cruz.

It's tradition. It used to signify the end of carnival and the beginning of lent.

It's called the Burial of the Sardine (even though it's cremated) and is where wailing widows (blokes in drag) mourn the end of carnival, even though it still carries on for days.

Why? Well, as ever various stories exist, but the sardine connection is probably what you are going to be eating a lot of when you give up meat during the Lenten fast. Probably. It's also seen as a return to "everyday" frugal things after the undeniable excesses of carnival.

The wailing widows are dressed like tarts, because now they've lost their husband (the sardine), the poor things have no other means of support, so they'll have to go "on the game". And for some reason the "clergy", bless the funeral goers with dildos.

Does it even have to make sense? It's one of carnival's biggest party nights.

In Santa Cruz, the the funeral procession leaves from the Calle Juan Pablo II at around 9 pm, taking a route through Méndez Núñez, Pilar, Villalba Hervás, La Marina and ending up in the Plaza de España, with the burning of the sardine in the Avenida Marítima.



Funeral Of The Sardine from Brasero Project on Vimeo.

All events are liable to change beyond our control


Fluent in Spanish and having spent 16 years on the island, Pamela Stocks has now been translating, researching and publishing information on customs and events in Tenerife for 25+ years. This takes a considerable amount of time and effort, for which she receives no payment whatsoever. If you find this work useful or interesting, please buy her a coffee. Buy Pamela Stocks a Coffee

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