Feast of the Madonna del Fuoco, patroness of Forlì

1 February 2023

On February 4, the oldest city festival is celebrated in Forlì (FC) in honor of the Madonna del Fuoco (Our Lady of Fire), patron saint of the city.

The origins of the devotion to the Madonna del Fuoco

The devotion to the Madonna del Fuoco was born on the night of Wednesday 4 February 1428. The image of the Madonna was exhibited in a school in Forlì, located in via Leone Cobelli, where, during the winter, a fireplace was lit to warm the pupils. On the evening of February 4, 1428, a fire broke out from this hearth which completely destroyed the school; the flames continued to burn for a few days, so it was with some astonishment that the intact image of the Madonna was found among the rubble.

Today in place of the school that burned down stands the church of the Miracle of the Madonna del Fuoco, protector of the city of Forlì.

Every year in Forlì, in memory of the miraculous event, on the night between 4 and 5 February, red candles are displayed in the windows, which burn throughout the night.

From the oldest woodcut in Italy to our majolica

The image of Our Lady of Fire measures 49 x 40 cm and is made on plain paper, glued and nailed to a wooden tablet. It is believed to be the oldest woodcut on paper kept in Italy.

La Vecchia Faenza creates ceramics depicting the Madonna del Fuoco in relief, they are hand painted in our workshops and can be posted or placed in niches even outside.