The "Diablos"

The Devils - La Endiablada

The brotherhood of the “diablos” is a religious organization dedicated to Candelaria Virgin and San Blas. To be a part of this brotherhood, it is necessary to satisfy one of these prerequisites: being an inhabitant of Almonacid del Marquesado or a descendant of them and to be married to a woman from Almonacid. If we satisfy one of these three prerequisites it is necessary to ask for permission to join the brotherhood and pay some money. There are children and very old people in La Endiablada. The “diablo mayor” is the brother who has been a “diablo” for the most consecutive years so, if a “diablo” can´t take part in any edition of La Endiablada, he will lose his privileged position and must start again the following year. “Diablo mayor” is a life position, so there will not be another one until the current one passes away. There are some rules in the brotherhood about schedules and conduct, and “diablo mayor” is the one who disciplines the unruly “diablo” with different actions like warnings, imposition of fines and even expulsion.

 

Dances: We have spoken about the different ways to dance in the Program for the festival, but there are two different performances.  While “diablos” walk around the village, they form two long lines which are lead by "diablo mayor” and go slowly sounding their cowbells with hip movements. When they are in front of their saints, “diablos”dance on tiptoe with small jumps. This kind of dance and the heavy  cowbells cause great fatigue. During the procession, visitors can see and feel the intensity and devotion of the tired “diablos”.  Therefore, it is common for the visitors at this point to finally understand the thrill that this festival makes "diablos” feel, and removes any thought about banality or triviality.

 

In the church or the procession visitors can also see the big jumps, which are usually done downhill and into the church. This is another special moment for visitors.

 

Costume

Costumes - La Endiablada

One of the most strikng aspects of the fiesta is the garments of the "diablos". Now, we will see the different elements integrated in the costume of the "diablos".

 

 

Cencerros -cowbells- : The real stars of the fiesta, are not the usual cowbells for cattle because these are bigger and they must be ordered from specialized factories in Mora -Toledo- or Almansa –Albacete-. There are many sizes for them. It depends on strength, age or desire of every "diablo", but the biggest get over 45 cm. We can find "sartas" –groups of cowbells- of two, three - the most common- or four cowbells. They are tied with leather straps. Some of these cowbells are over a thousand years old.

 

 

Costume: Colorful shirts and pants, which have always been hand-sewn by the women of Almonacid del Marquesado.

 

 

Tocado -Flower cap or miter- : The "diablos" start the fiesta wearing the "gorro" -cap- for the Virgin. A cylinder piece over that we find some flowers. From the washing of the face of San Blas, the "diablos" wear the "mitra" –miter or pointed hat- to remember episcopal dignity of San Blas.

 

 

La porra -Staff with a head- : Like a scepter, it has a head at the end whose form is usually a monster, devil, dragons, San Blas images, etc.

 

 

Careta -Mask- : In the past, to use a "careta" was a must, but since the 1950's this part of the costume has fallen out of fashion and today it is very unusual. 

 
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