The liquefaction process sometimes takes hours, even days, and on occasions fails to happen at all. When the miracle does not occur it is seen as a sign of impending disaster. In fact, disaster has struck on at least five occasions when the blood failed to liquefy, including in when tens of thousands of people died from the plague and in when 3, people were killed in an earthquake which devastated much of southern Italy.
The phials will remain on view in the cathedral for several days before being returned to a vault in the chapel of the cathedral's treasury. The first historical reference to the liquefaction of the martyr's blood is dated Although now a headline-making saint, little is known about San Gennaro except that he was bishop of Benevento to the south of Naples and was martyred during the persecution of Christians spearheaded by the Roman Emperor Diocletian.
The bishop was beheaded for refusing to bow down to his 'pagan' persecutors. According to legend, his body and head, still dripping blood, were gathered up by an old man and taken to a safe place while a local woman filled a phial with his spilt blood.
Europe :: Italy — The World Factbook - Central Intelligence Agency
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Vivi per un miracolo (English translation)
The language is sometimes stilted and poetic for example, they tend to use Voi as a singular "you" and leave off the final "e" in verbs so that cantare "to sing" becomes cantar but it is nevertheless quite similar to the modern language. Lyrics and translation. Nessun dorma from Turandot by Giacomo Puccini - nobody sings this tenor showcase like Pavarotti. Mozart - in this fun "catalogue aria," Leporello lists the exploits of his master, Don Giovanni; see a great version sung by Stefano De Peppo Libiam ne' lieti calici from La Traviata by Giuseppe Verdi - this Brindisi or "Drinking Song" is a classic duet.
Mozart - you may remember this as the song that is played over the prison loudspeakers in The Shawshank Redemption. Ironically, although Morgan Freeman's character says "I'd like to think they were singing about something so beautiful, it can't be expressed in words O mio babbino caro from Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini. Traditional and Folk The following are older, "classic" Italian songs.
See this Italian folk music page for more lyrics.
See a more thorough translation and a moving version sung by a 9 year old for the Winter Olympics in Torino. It was controversially used in a sock commercial with slightly altered lyrics. Una Lacrima sul Viso - a song by Elvis-like Bobby Solo, which became a worldwide hit in ; it's about two people who have been in love with each other but didn't realize it was requited until one noticed "a tear upon your face". It's like the Italian version of "We are the World". Novembre - "November", a defiant and somewhat sad song.
The original appears in a patriotic advertisement for Monte dei Paschi di Siena a bank. Music video. Il Centro del Mondo - Another catchy rock tune, popular in Music video which strangely features people talking in Spanish.