La Befana – Hang the Stocking Tonight

La Befana is one of Italy’s oldest and most celebrated legends. Each year on January 6 (the Epiphany) the children of Italy wake to see if La Befana has visited.

As legend has it, Befana was approached by the biblical magi, also known as the Three Wise Men a few days before the birth of the Infant Jesus. They asked for directions to where the Son of God was, as they had seen his star in the sky, but she did not know.  The magi invited her to join them on the journey to find the baby Jesus, but she declined, saying she had too much housework.  Fearing she made a mistake, she tried to find them but was unsuccessful.  She stopped every child to give them a small treat in hopes that one was the child.  La Befana is still searching for the little baby. She leaves all the good children toys and candy or fruit, while the not so good children get coal, onions or garlic.

If you have been good, hang your stocking and don’t forget the rhyme!  Buona notte e baci a tutti!

La Befana vien di notte,
con le scarpe tutte rotte,
neve, gelo, tramontana,
viva viva La Befana!


La Befana comes at night,
wearing her shoes all broken,
snow, frost, winter winds,
Hurray for the Befana


2 responses to “La Befana – Hang the Stocking Tonight

  1. Carole DelTurco

    Love this legend ………….

  2. notitiae

    Good Idea fot the Befana… Greetings!!!
    NotitiAE for Befana at this link:

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