The Bull Fiesta – “The Feast of Tavros”

“The Feast of Tavros” is renowned in Greece and across the whole world where Lesbians live. Its main core is the sacrifice of a bull wearing a wreath, in commemoration of Agios Haralambos. The Feast takes place in the nearby mountain of Tavros, that attendants reach on the backs of adorned horses.

Rituals of ancient times are evident throughout the whole feast: the bull sacrifice, the purification, the ritual, the horse races, the traditional dances, all tightly connected with the Hellenic tradition of Minor Asia. The Feast takes place at the end of July and lasts for four days. It took its contemporary form in the mid 18th century, it is however certain that it is actually an ancient ritual that has survived in the centuries. The Agricultural Union “PROODOS” was established during Ottoman occupation in 1774 and ever since it has been successfully organizing this holy Feast.

The spiritual life of Lesbos has always been intense and active. In Agia Paraskevi, during middle-war ages, a period also known as the “Lesbian Spring”, there has been a great cultural movement. This is evident from the fact that many cultural organization were established then, some of which are active even until today, alongside with the others that were created later on. Many scholars, writers and artists, famous in Greece and abroad were born in Agia Paraskevi from the 19th century until today.