A beloved statue of the Virgin Mary made a brief appearance on Monday in a southern Spanish city before returning to its underwater resting place.
Known in the city of Algeciras as the Virgin of Palm, the statue spends most of the year inside a cave in the Bay of Gibraltar. During the Feast of the Assumption of Mary on August 15, divers drop into the bay to retrieve the statue, giving residents and tourists a chance to see the lady up close.
According to Getty, this annual tradition began in 1975. Locals have linked the practice to an event that supposedly took place in the seventeenth century. Legend has it that an Italian ship docked at Algeciras’ busy port centuries ago to wait out a heavy storm. On board the ship, the crew members found a box with an image of the Virgin Mary holding a palm leaf. It was only when the crew removed that box from the ship that the sea became calm once again.
Scroll through the slideshow below to see images of this celebration.