Corpus Christi

The procession in which the custody of the magnificent Cathedral through the streets decked in Toledo marks the greatest day in the calendar of religious ceremonies and in the life of the city and the many visitors. The official consideration of International Interest Party not only confirms its importance recognized for centuries.


The first written references to the processional entourage back to the year 1418, when the cathedral was not completed or was the aforementioned gem. In the reigns of Charles I and Philip II, with characteristic ceremonial trappings for his dynasty, the party would charge its peak and mark the guidelines now celebrate.

To this day the city wearing their best clothes, taking a month to put the ornaments and "awnings" actually pallium for custody, throughout the processional route. It is considered good omen that the awnings were wet with rain at this time. Installing extended ephemeral triumphal arches of green branches. Also adorn the courtyards Toledo, hidden treasures, which you can visit for a few days, the duration of the contest to decide which is the most beautiful.

The festival begins Thursday, when each person Toledo checks if everything is ready and if others are doing the same. Hundreds of rickety chairs reserve the site for placement of appropriate seats that are rented in advance to see the procession in the front row.

In the afternoon a parade with giant cheerful, bigheaded and traditional dial Tarasca makes its way to the sound of music. That night also officially makes muncipal corporation accompanied by the beadle, whose role was to ensure that no awning or ornament prevent the passage of custody, with almost four meters high.

The big day

The big day of the balconies in the square of Zocodover, rich fabrics embroidered hanging of cabinets or hanging with shields and Eucharistic reasons. The floor is covered with herbs and from morning hang from the walls of the cathedral's huge Flemish tapestries from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, in what will be the first and last part of the procession. Giants and big heads back to the sound of the orchestra. At eleven o'clock, after the solemn Pontifical Mass, the procession processional begins to leave the temple to Puerta Llana. In the street and expect the horse picket Civil Guard in full uniform and municipal timbaleros also equestrian, for starting off towards the south transept. Behind the beadle is carried processional cross from the historic Carrillo sleeve Cardinal Cardinal Cisneros.

Over thirty participating groups wear their representative and the corresponding carrying banners and scripts, in the order set by the protocol of courtship.

Behind the historic Guild Gardeners are the fraternities and sororities of junior and children of First Communion, Christian associations and chapters. As religious seminarians walk first, followed by the religious orders, the secular clergy, with the Brotherhood of the Holy Charity, founded after the conquest of Toledo in 1085, the privilege of going directly before the cross of Cardinal Mendoza and chaplains Cathedral preceding the departure of the Custody. This time announced by mortars.

The Primate Archbishop continues with his entourage and Auxiliary Bishop then official representations of the various administrations and public and military. Links to the liturgical character Zocodover Square, also announced by the rockets, like the entrance of the Custody of the Cathedral.

The tour lasts about three hours before the excitement of thousands of spectators who line the streets along the entire route.

On the occasion of the feast of Corpus Christi, for a month, are organized in Toledo numerous cultural and entertainment events, exhibitions, competitions, sports competitions, concerts and festivals, and the Early Music Festival and upscale bullfights.

Data from the party

Category: International Tourist Interest Declared

Tradition: XIV Useful information

Dates: from May to June, according to the liturgical calendar.

Location: processional route through various streets of the Old Quarter, beginning and ending at the Cathedral.


- Enjoy special colors and atmosphere adorned with flowers, thyme and tapestries from the streets.
- During the celebration of the holidays, enjoy different cultural activities that take place in the city for Big Week Toledo.
- The heat is on these dates. Leverage awnings covering the streets through which the procession passes. Place several days before and removed several days after the meeting.

Other Interesting




The most important object that is stored in the chapel of the Treasury is the great Henry of Arfe custody (commissioned by Cardinal Cisneros) which developed between 1517 and 1524. It is of gothic archaic and great architectural beauty. At first it was styled in silver but in the late sixteenth century Archbishop Quiroga ordered it browned, to match the custody of the high altar, which is gilded wood.

Cardinal Cisneros wanted custody of greater presence and importance of Isabella to make it look in the procession of Corpus Christi in Toledo, the largest being held in Castile. Custody took seven years to develop and cost exceeded fifteen million maravedis, of which Arfe received, in addition to the actual 2700 stipulated a bonus of 2,500 maravedis the cathedral chapter handed on Christmas of 1523 impressed by their work .

Is hexagonal. It rises in columns that are beautifully executed, with jeweled ornaments and figurines of various angels, saints, rosettes, bells and nipples. The set is closed in the last body where a cross is placed sixteenth century. The pedestal on which it is based is eighteenth century baroque.

In Toledo's practice since 1595 make this custody in the Corpus Christi procession on a float made for this purpose with a tight leveling that is mechanically driven. In the procession are ahead of custody political and ecclesiastical authorities and behind the cadets of the Academy of Infantry.

Fun Facts: The custody is armed with the help of screws holding 12,500, 5,600 and 260 pieces various figurines. We used 183 kg of silver plus 18 gold. Among the inscriptions on it, you can read:

"Don Francisco Jiménez [Cardinal Cisneros], Cardinal Archbishop of Toledo, Governor of Spain and conqueror of Africa, he ordered that custody of the Holy Body of Christ, which was completed in vacant, being Obrero Diego López de Ayala. Year of Our Lord 1524. "

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