SPLIT, 7 May 2021 – The centuries-old celebration of Saint Domnius (Sveti Duje), or the Feast of St. Domnius, was celebrated in a different way again in the Dalmatian city of Split on Friday.
Every year on the 7th of May, the Day of the City of Split, Sudamja, is also celebrated. Usually, the day is marked by various events and festivities on the Riva but not this year.
Like last year, due to the coronavirus epidemic, this year’s feast day of the Split and Split-Dalmatia County patron, Saint Domnius, was observed without the traditional procession and mass celebration on Split’s Riva waterfront.
Although the pandemic may have cancelled the traditional celebration of St. Domnius for the second year in a row, it didn’t dampen the spirits of the people of Split who came out to the centre in large numbers today to mark the ocassion.
“I am just a little sad about the whole situation. I miss the real Sudamja and the big atmosphere around the town. Before the coronavirus you could not cross the waterfront, today there are people, but it is not like before. I can’t wait for everything to return to normal,” an elderly Split resident told Dalmacija Danas.
Saint Domnius was a 3rd-century Bishop of Salona and was martyred with seven other Christians in the persecutions of Emperor Diocletian.
The tradition holds that Domnio came to Rome with Saint Peter and was then sent by Peter to evangelize Dalmatia, where he was martyred along with 8 soldiers he had converted.
Saint Domnius became the Split’s patron saint, and the city’s cathedral (the Cathedral of Saint Domnius) was built-in the mausoleum of Diocletian itself, the emperor who martyred him.