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Public holidays in Chile

This is a list of national holidays in Chile; most of them are Christian holidays.


On January 28, 1915, President of Chile Ramon Barros Luco promulgated Law 2,977, which arranged all the information insofar about holidays celebrated in Chile. It established or kept the following holidays:

Sundays year-round.

January 1 , June 29 (Saint Peter and Saint Paul), August 15 (Assumption of Mary), December 8 (Immaculate Conception), December 25 (Christmas Day), and the floating holidays of the Ascension of Jesus Christ and Corpus Christi.

Fridays and Saturdays during Holy Week.

September 18, Establishment of the First Government Junta in 1810.

September 19 and May 21, in celebration of the glories of the Army and the Navy.

The day of election of electors of the President of the Republic.

The same law abolished, by omission, four religious holidays: Epiphany , Carnival , Annunciation and Nativity of the Virgin Mary . It also shortened the national independence holiday to two days .

On November 14, 1921, President Arturo Alessandri Palma promulgated Law 3,810

, marking October 12 (Columbus Day) as holiday.

On April 30, 1931, President Carlos Ibanez del Campo promulgated the "Decree Enforceable as Law" ("Decreto con Fuerza de Ley") 130, marking May 1 (May Day) as holiday.

In 1932, Provisional President Bartolome Blanche reinstated the september 20 holiday, which existed until 1944.

In 1968 the holidays of Saint Peter and Saint Paul, Ascension of Jesus Christ and Corpus Christi were eliminated by Article 144 of Law 16,840. The Catholic Church agreed to celebrate them on the nearest Sunday.

September 11 (the day of the military coup in 1973) was established as a holiday by the military regime in 1981. In 1998 it was replaced by the Dia de la Unidad Nacional ("Day of National Unity"), to be observed the first Monday in September. In march 2002 the latter was abolished.

The holiday on June 29 (Saint Peter and Saint Paul) was reestablished in september 1985.

In 1987, during a visit by Pope John Paul II, Corpus Christi was reestablished (although the Church continued to observe the holiday on the nearest Sunday).

On March 10, 2000, Law 19,668 moved the Saint Peter and Saint Paul, Columbus Day and Corpus Christi holidays to the preceding Monday, if they were to fall on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, or to the following Monday, if they were to fall on a Friday. Additionally, the designation of Columbus Day was changed from Aniversario del Descubrimiento de America to Dia del Descubrimiento de Dos Mundos ("Discovery of Two Worlds' Day"), an obvious corruption from the then-recent ubiquitous "Encuentro de dos mundos" ("The Meeting of Two Worlds") slogan


On January 6, 2007 Law 20,148 replaced Corpus Christi with Our Lady of Mount Carmel, to be observed July 16, starting that year.

On September 14, 2007 Law 20,215 declared holidays all September 17s falling on a Monday and all September 20s falling on a Friday.

On October 11, 2008 Law 20,299 established Reformation Day on October 31 as a national holiday, starting that year. This holiday is moved to the preceding Friday if it falls on a Tuesday, or to the following Friday if it falls on a Wednesday.

Besides yearly holidays, since 1901 presidential elections are declared holidays, as mandated by successive versions of the General Elections law . Censuses, held every ten years, are also declared holidays since 1982; that year's census and 1992's were so due to ad-hoc laws; censuses taken from 1992 onwards are declared holidays due to a reform in the Census law.

Meaning of the January 1 holiday

Shortly after Chile's independence, an 1824 government decreePeralta, Paulina (2007). Chile tiene Fiesta, p.59. LOM ediciones, Santiago, Chile. ISBN 978-956-282-921-2. enumerated and regulated the religious holidays, including the Feast of the Circumcision of Christ, observed on January 1. Law 2,977 lists this holiday by date only, without using any name, but does treat it as religious one. However, nowadays (as of 2009) it's widely celebrated as the (civic) New Year holiday. As a matter of fact, there aren't any known regulations later than 1915 that use the "Circumcision of Christ" name, while "New Year" is used by numerous regulations of all types (laws , decree-laws (decretos ley) , decrees enforceable as law (decretos con fuerza de ley) , ministerial decrees and resolutions (decree 6234 of 1929 of the Public Education Ministry (the oldest such regulation), decree 83 of 1985 of the Labor Ministry, decree 48 of 2007 of the Labor Ministry, et cetera) and municipal decrees and ordinances .


Fiesta de la Virgen de Carmen (in Spanish)

Compilation of holiday-related laws (in Spanish)

Online laws at the Chilean National Congress' Library (in Spanish)

External links

Chilean calendar with holidays (in Spanish)

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Public holidays in Chile

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