‘Botides’: Corfu’s Unique Holy Saturday Tradition

As every Holy Saturday morning, the Greek island of Corfu was packed again by locals and tourists who came to attend the “Botides” tradition that takes place in Spianada Square.

According to the tradition, at 12pm on Saturday, Corfiots who have decorated their windows with red flowers and badges, throw huge clay pots with red ribbons. The custom of the artificial ‘earthquake’ re-enacts the earthquake that followed Christ’s Resurrection. Thunderous knocks create an atmosphere of piety and triumph, showing the victory of life over death.

Shortly after 11am, right after the litany of the relics of St. Spyridon, Corfu’s most popular Easter custom began. Corfiots hurled dozens of clay pots filled with water from windows and balconies, crashing noisily on the streets below. The gripping atmosphere was heightened by the thunderous cannon fires from the city’s Old Fort, as well as the music played by the philharmonic bands and the applause of hundreds of tourists and locals who attended the celebration.