top of page

The Vascelluzzo (Varetta)

Confraternity M. SS. of Portosalvo dei Portosalvo - Archdiocese of Messina


Vascelluzzo - (Sicily)

  • Confraternity M. SS. of Portosalvo dei Portosalvo

    The Confraternity of Sailors, which has always been linked to the cult of the Madonna di Portosalvo, is the guardian of the simulacrum of the «Vascelluzzo» which, according to the Messina tradition, opens the Corpus Domini procession. The work belongs to the most beautiful and significant civil and religious traditions of Messina, in memory of a miraculous event that occurred during the Angevin invasion of the thirteenth century. The Vascelluzzo is a war galleon made up of a wooden core covered with silver sheets. On two of the three trees are fixed the crown supported by two fluttering cherubs and the cup on which the Marian relic is placed during the Corpus Domini procession. The prow is decorated with a rampant lion, while on the stern there are four caryatids and the image of the Madonna of Portosalvo, protector of the Confraternity; on the rectangular base of the varetta you can see four putti at the corners and on the sides the sailors, considered, according to tradition, the founders of Vascelluzzo. The four oblique trumpets develop from the base, each bearing a different medallion in the center: the Madonna della Letter, Patroness of Messina; s. Alberto, intercessor for Messina and his co-patron; Maria SS. Di Portosalvo dei Marinai, protector of the Confraternity; s. Placido with the Martyr brothers. A wavy sea is represented at the top of the base, on which the glorious vessel rests.

bottom of page