The Cant de la Sibil·la (Song of the Sibyl) was introduced in Europe during the Middle Ages and came to Mallorca with the Christian conquest in 1229. It is performed in the majority of churches on the island, with the knowledge being passed from generation to generation, and has changed little from its Gregorian roots.
The rite consists of a child or a woman walking through the church holding an upright sword and singing the chant Capella-style. He or she is accompanied by two or three further children who carry candles, and organ music plays in-between the verses. They are dressed in tunics with matching caps, which have been made by the local community, and represent the sibyls singing the prophecy of the Last Judgement.
Since 2010 it is listed as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage event.
The main events take place in Palma Cathedral from 23:00 and Lluc Monastery from 22:00 during the Misa del Gallo, the midnight mass on Christmas Eve, although it happens throughout the day in various churches in Mallorca, including:
- Algaida - Parish Church (20:30)
- Campos - Sa Rapita (18:00) & Sant Julia (19:30)
- Llucmajor - Mare de Deu de la Lactancia (20:00)
- Muro - Església Parroquial Sant Joan Baptist (19:30)
- Porreres: Oratori de Sant Felip Neri (19:00) & Nostra Senyora de la Consolació (20:00)
- Sa Pobla: Parish Church (20:00)
- Vilafranca de Bonany: Parish Church (19:30)