Holy Week in Braga
©Holy Week Braga. All rights reserved.

Photography exhibition

Holy Week

a European perspective

Orihuela, Spain


Society of the Company Armada y Centuria Romana de Ntro. Padre Jesus.


The "ARMAOS" of Orihuela is a society integrated in the Junta Mayor as any other brotherhood. They form various groups such as the Imperador group, or the lancers group. They are part of most of the processions. Every night they perform a performance in front of their head-office known as "el caracol" (the snail) to the sound of the "TURUTA", they go round and round in themselves returning to the initial position. In the photo, the president, who is the Centurion, inspect the troops before the procession on Palm Sunday afternoon.





The Invitation


A throne, in the shape of a religious litter, is responsible for announcing to the people that the procession is coming. It consists of a small temple with an empty cross and a towel over the cross, symbols of the Passion. This act has different elements: Horn with a long and sad sound; Clarinets; Drums with a low sound accompanied by the cries "A Jesús lo van a matar, lo van a matar, lo van a matar"; Twin horns are two long tubes of almost three metres. They translate a melody that all Orihuela people have known since childhood. In this photograph we can see the announcing horn known as "LA SORDA" and some horns.

It takes part in most of the processions during Holy Week and depends directly on the Junta Mayor de Cofradías.





The Penitential Brotherhood of the Christ of Holy Death


This brotherhood parades in the early hours of Holy Friday morning leaving from the Historic University of Santo Domingo, also known as El Escorial de Levante. It is a building declared a National Monument, of Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Rococo style from the 16th century, founded by Cardinal Loazes.

The procession walks through the streets of the old part of the city by the sound of the musical notes of the Ginés Pérez de la Parra Brass Quintet playing "Música para los funerales de la Reina María" by Henry Purcell, the choir of "La Primitiva Pasión Federico Rogel" playing "Miserere" and "O Crux" by Ginés Pérez de la Parra, a composer from Orihuela during the Renaissance.

The Christ is the work of sculptor José Capuz, from 1940. In the year 2022 they added "La Virgen de la Amargura" to the brotherhood, a work of the sculptor Víctor García Villalgordo.





The Diaba (female devil)


 It is a work by the monk Fray Nicolás de Bussy from 1695. "LA DIABLESA" is also known as "LA CRUZ DE LOS LABRADORES". This sculptural group is so called because of its structure, with a cross on a globe, a skeleton on one side and a devil with breasts on the other. It is the most studied and photographed Holy Week religious litter, due to its symbolism and originality. It is the only religious litter in Spain that parades with a devil, in this case a female one. Its most widely accepted interpretation is the triumph of the Cross over death (represented by the skeleton) and over sin and the flesh (represented by a demon).

It is presented on Holy Saturday afternoon in the procession of the Holy Burial of Christ. It does not enter the Cathedral like the rest of the procession; it waits for the others religious litters leave through the side door before rejoining the procession. This is a procession full of traditions, organised exclusively by the City Hall. This civil organisation invites the Archdiocese and its Bishop to participate in the procession.