All Historical events in Tuscany

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    Palio di San Ranieri 2019

    Date: 17 June 2019

    Time: 12:00 am to 12:00 am

    Palio di San Ranieri (Regatta of Saint Ranieri) is a historical reenactment event held every year in Pisa on the date of June 17, the day when the city celebrates its patron saint, San Ranieri. Along with the Luminaria, the Gioco del Ponte and, every four years, the Regatta of the Historical Maritime Republics, the Palio di San Ranieri is part of a series of events entitled Giugno Pisano (Pisan June). The regatta, preceded by a historical parade on the streets of the historical center of Pisa, is disputed among 4 crews representing the 4 historical districts of the city, two representing Tramontana and two of Mezzogiorno – San Francesco (yellow boat), San Martino (red boat), Santa Maria (blue boat) and Sant’Antonio (green boat). Each crew consists of eight rowers, a helmsman and a montatore. The montatore is responsible for the most spectacular part of the race – he must climb a ten meter high flagpole, placed at the finish, on a floating platform, to capture the palio (the flag). The boats recall the typical frigates of the Medicean Order of the Saint Stephen’s Knights. The race starts from the Railway Bridge and takes place over a distance of 1,500 Read more [...]

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    Giostra del Saracino – Giostra di San Donato 2019

    Date: 22 June 2019

    Giostra del Saracino (Saracen Joust) is one of the most important medieval festivals in Italy, held twice a year in Piazza Grande, in Arezzo. In the penultimate Saturday in June, during the evening, is held the Giostra di San Donato, dedicated to San Donato, the patron saint of Arezzo, and in the first Sunday of September, during the day, is held the Giostra della Madonna del Conforto, dedicated to Our Lady of Comfort, protector of the city. The Saracen Joust is a competition between the four Quarters of the city: the Porta Crucifera District, the Porta del Foro District, the Porta Sant’Andrea District and the Porta Santo Spirito District. The competition consists of hitting a target held by the Buratto, a revolving armor-plated dummy who personifies the King of the Indies. The participants, two of each team, eight in total, gallop their horses towards the Buratto, trying to hit the target with a lance. The couple of knights with the highest score win the competition. The Joust is preceded by a procession of 350 costumed people and 27 horses parading along the historical center of Arezzo, ending in Piazza Grande, where the tournament take place.   GIOSTRA DI SAN DONATO Read more [...]

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    Gioco del Ponte 2019

    Date: 29 June 2019

    Gioco del Ponte (Battle of the Bridge) is a historical reenactment event held every year in Pisa, on the last Saturday of June. Along with the Luminaria, the Palio di San Ranieri and, every four years, the Regatta of the Historical Maritime Republics, the Gioco del Ponte is part of a series of events entitled Giugno Pisano (Pisan June). The Battle of the Bridge is held on the beautiful bridge Ponte di Mezzo, between two teams dressed in elaborate 16th century costumes – one representing Mezzogiorno, the districts of Pisa south of the River Arno, and the other representing Tramontana, the districts north of the Arno. The event has five stages: the march of the troops along the riverbanks of the Arno River, the formal opening of the battle, the call to arms, the challenges made by ambassadors, and finally, the battle itself. In the contemporary version, the game consists in the pushing of an iron cart along a specially mounted track on the Ponte di Mezzo, aiming to conquer the enemy’s side of the bridge.   SHORT HISTORY Gioco del Ponte has its roots in an ancient violent game called Mazzascudo, held on the day of Sant’Antonio Abate, on Read more [...]

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    Palio di Siena – Palio di Provenzano 2019

    Date: 2 July 2019

    Palio di Siena is a horce race held twice a year in Siena, on July 2, known as Palio di Provenzano, dedicated to the Madonna of Provenzano, and on August 16, under the title Palio dell’Assunta, in honor of the Assumption of Virgin Mary. Palio di Siena is an equestrian competition between the 17 contrade (districts) of the city, held in the beautiful Piazza del Campo. The race is preceded by the Corteo Storico, a parade of about 700 people dressed in medieval costumes.   SHORT HISTORY Horse races in Siena were held since the 13th century, when the Palio was the closing event of the annual festival dedicated to the patron saint of the town, the Virgin Mary of the Assumption. Initially, there were many contrade, but after the plague of 1347, their number was reduced to 42. A contrada was named after a street, a church or after an illustrious family residing on its territory. In 1605, the Captain Sigismondo Santi and the Cavalier Fortunio Martini made a proposal to the Municipality of Siena, to held the competition in Piazza del Campo. As a result, at the beginning of the 17th century, the Palio was relocated in the Read more [...]

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    Palio di San Paolino 2019

    Date: 12 July 2019

    Time: 9:30 pm to 12:00 am

    Palio di San Paolino is a historical reenactment event dedicated to San Paolino, the patron saint of Lucca, held every year on the 12th of July, in the main square of the town, Piazza San Martino.   SHORT HISTORY In 1169, during the war with Pisa, the government of Lucca, concerned about the constant assaults from the neighboring town, asked the old ally Genoa for help. To strengthen the defence of Lucca, Genoa sent a certain number of crossbowmen. In a relatively short time, the Lucca soldiers became experts in handling the crossbow. In the 14th century, Castruccio Castracani delli Antelminelli, Lord of Lucca, introduced a prize to reward the strongest crossbowmen of the city. From that moment, the Palio of San Paolino will be held regularly on the occasion of the main festivities of the city. The rules of the Palio were established by a document named ordo pro balistari, dated June 26, 1443, preserved today in the State Archive of Lucca. The document is the oldest regulation for an archery competition in Europe. On October 10th, 1970, a group of people wishing to rediscover the ancient tradition of crossbowing, formed the Compagnia Balestrieri Lucca. Today, the Palio of Read more [...]

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    Palio di Siena – Palio dell’Assunta 2019

    Date: 16 August 2019

    Palio di Siena is a horse race between the 17 contrade (districts) of Siena, held twice a year in Piazza del Campo, the main square of the city. The Palio from July 2 is called Palio di Provenzano and it’s held in honor of the Madonna of Provenzano, and the one held on August 16 is called Palio dell’Assunta, and is dedicated to the Assumption of Virgin Mary. The race is preceded by Corteo Storico, a historical parade which includes about 700 participants representing the 17 contrade and the institutions of the ancient Republic of Siena. In the afternoon, the procession starts from Piazza del Duomo and, after parading on the streets of the historical center of the town, arrives on the beautiful shell-shaped square Piazza del Campo. The actual race consists in circling three times the Piazza del Campo. A contrada bears the name of a street, a church or of an illustrious family residing on its territory. The 17 contrade of Siena still competing today in the Palio are Aquila (Eagle), Bruco (Caterpillar), Chiocciola (Snail), Civetta (Little Owl), Drago (Dragon), Giraffa (Giraffe), Istrice (Crested Porcupine), Leocorno (Unicorn), Lupa (She-Wolf), Nicchio (Seashell), Oca (Goose), Onda (Wave), Pantera (Panther), Selva Read more [...]

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    Giostra del Saracino – Giostra della Madonna del Conforto 2019

    Date: 1 September 2019

    Giostra del Saracino (Saracen Joust) is one of the most important historical reenactment festivals in Italy, held twice a year in Arezzo. The festival takes place on the penultimate Saturday in June, during the evening, dedicated to San Donato, patron saint of Arezzo, under the name of Giostra di San Donato, and on the first Sunday of September, during the day, dedicated to Our Lady of Comfort, protector of Arezzo, under the name of Giostra della Madonna del Conforto. The four Quarters of the city, which compete in the tournament, are the Porta Crucifera District, known also as Colcitrone, the Porta del Foro District, also known as the Porta San Lorentino, the District of Porta Sant’Andrea and the District of Porta Santo Spirito, also known as Quartiere della Colombina.   SHORT HISTORY The oldest information about a knightly tournament held in Arezzo dates back to 1260, when, in Piazza Grande, it was celebrated the investiture of a knight of the order of the Golden Spur. Later, in 1331, two letters sent by the Tarlati, Lords of Arezzo, mention tournaments with spears held in the city, to celebrate the success of a diplomatic mission in France. At the end of the Read more [...]