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Did You Know?
DID YOU KNOW?
A 200-year old custom centres on St Anthony, 'the matchmaker'. His feast day on 13 June, draws unmarried women to the Ermita.
Standing before the baptismal font, each drops 13 pins into the water, presses her palm down and then lifts it out. Each pin
sticking to the skin represents a suitor.
Real Madrid are known as the merengues (meringues) because of their all-white strip. Rivals Atlético Madrid are the colchoneros
(mattress makers) because of their red and white striped shirts.
Napoleon Bonaparte put his brother, Joseph, on the throne of Spain in 1808. This precipitated the Madrid uprising against
the French on the 2 de mayo (2 May). Never accepted, José's only popular measure was the relaxation of duty on alcohol, which
won him the nickname, Pepe Botella (Joe Bottle).
The ancient Burial of the Sardine ceremony painted by Goya is still an annual event. On Ash Wednesday, a mock funeral procession
- bearing a tiny coffin and accompanied by a jazz band - makes its way from the Ermita de San Antonio de la Florida to the
Los Pajaritos fountain in the Casa de Campo, where the sardine is interred.
The Casa de Correos clock is an integral part of Spain's New Year celebrations. As it strikes midnight, Spaniards all over
the country watch television and eat las uvas de la suerte (lucky grapes), gulping down one grape per chime to ensure their
good fortune in the new year.