One of the most celebrated fests is just arund the corner, so we wanted to make sure that you know a little bit more about our patron. On February 3rd we will celebrate Day of St. Blasius and give our thanks to the saint who saved our city many times trough history.
One of the first stories about St. Blasius dates back to 3rd of February 971. It was a cold winter night in medieval Dubrovnik… The Venetian ships anchored before the city and entered it under the pretence of stocking up on essentials like food and water for the rest of their journey. According to the legend, their spies were already all around the city, taking notes on number of guards on the city walls and amount of amunition in Dubrovnik. The parish priest Stojko had an unexpected encounter with on old man who entered his church, and warned him about the suspicious behavior of the Venetians. Stojko asked for his name, and the old man replied – “Vlaho.” (Croatian name for Blasius). Soon, the city fathers were informed by the priest Stojko and the attack was prevented.
The following year, in 972, Dubrovnik celebrated a day in honour of their patron saint for the first time.The people of Dubrovnik built the first church in the honour of Saint Blasius near the city gates. In 1026 the first remains of St. Blaise, the martyr and bishop of Sebaste, were moved to Dubrovnik and the citizens of Dubrovnik celebrated 3rd of February as the greatest holiday ever since.
There are many other legends and stories about Saint Blasius, but one of the most known is the legend of his miraculous healing of a child in whose throat a bone had stuck, threatening to choke the child. This is why, today, you can witness a ritual called “grlicenje”, a curative and preventive blessing of the throat with crossed candles on the Saint’s Day. Intrestingly enough, even Croatian otolaryngologists and the societies of laryngectomized persons chose St. Blasius for their patron.
If you find yourself in Dubrovnik during the main celebration on February 3rd, make sure you wake up on time and join us while we celebrate our saint.