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Spanish Culture


Festvities, Hymn Symbolize Joy of Easter

Throughout much of the Spanish-speaking world, there is no more colorful or momentous time of year than Holy Week. The week begins with Palm Sunday (el Domingo de Ramos), includes Good Friday (el Viernes Santo), and ends with Easter (la Pascua de Resurrección). Known as Semana Santa, the week marks the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem followed by his death and resurrection.
It is celebrated nearly everywhere in Latin America and Spain with religious observances and various types of processions. In some areas, the celebrations can become quite elaborate. Those in places such as Antigua, Guatemala, and Ayacucho, Peru, draw celebrants from throughout the world. In most of the Spanish-speaking world, Easter rivals if not surpasses Christmas as a time for celebration. You can learn more about such celebrations from other About Guides by following the links in the box at right; you can also learn more about how various traditions within Christianity understand the holiday.

Regardless of where or how it is celebrated, there is perhaps no hymn for Christians that better expresses the spirit of the Easter season than Charles Wesley's Christ the Lord is Risen Today, shown below in a Spanish translation. In case you need help understanding the words, a vocabulary list follows the song. It lists the song's words other than cognates and basic vocabulary (although beginners may not be familiar with the verb conjugations used).

As you well may know if you've ever tried translating songs from one language to another, getting something approaching an exact translation of a hymn is challenging at best, and more so if you're trying to maintain a rhyme scheme. Sometimes, as was done with this song, the translators do well to convey the themes and general thoughts of the song rather than seeking a literal interpretation. Go to the following page if you'd like to see how a translation of the Spanish into English differs from the English version of the song.

Cristo ha resucitado
Cristo ha resucitado; ¡Aleluya!
Hoy gozoso oíd el canto; ¡Aleluya!
Con trompetas proclamad: ¡Aleluya!
Cielo y tierra entonad: ¡Aleluya!

Nuestro Rey hoy tiene vida; ¡Aleluya!
y la muerte fue vencida; ¡Aleluya!
Él murió para salvar, ¡Aleluya!
y la tumba conquistar; ¡Aleluya!

Su amor lo ha logrado; ¡Aleluya!
Redención Él no ha dado; ¡Aleluya!
Su agonía terminó; ¡Aleluya!
En fulgor se levantó; ¡Aleluya!

canto: singing, song
cielo: sky, heaven
conquistar: to conquer
entonar: to modulate, sound a tone
fulgor: brightness
gozoso: joyful
levantarse: to rise, get up
lograr: to achieve, attain, fulfill morir: to die
muerte: death
resucitar: to revive, bring back to life
rey: king
salvar: to save
tierra: world, earth, ground
vencer: to conquer, defeat
vida: life

Info about studying Spanish language:

  • Learn Spanish in Spain: Young and dynamic agency born with the aim of connecting schools and students from all over the world. Find here more information about Spanish language schools and Spanish language courses in Spain.

Info about studying in Spain:

  • Guide to Study in Spain: Find universities and colleges in Spain. If offers also pratical information for students that are planning to study in Spain.