Palio dell’Assunta 2022, the second act of the Palio di Siena 2022, dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, will take place on August 16, 2022, in Siena.
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 town. The Palio from July 2 is called Palio di Provenzano and it’s dedicated to the Madonna of Provenzano, while the one held on August 16 is called Palio dell’Assunta, and is held in honor of the Assumption of Virgin Mary.
The race is preceded by Corteo Storico (Historical Procession), a historical parade which includes about 700 participants representing the 17 contrade and the institutions of the ancient Republic of Siena. The procession starts in the afternoon 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 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 (Forest), Tartuca (Tortoise), Torre (Tower) and Valdimontone (Valley of the Ram).
Only 10 teams out of a total of 17 will participate in the race. The number of the participating contrade is composed from seven that were not present at the previous edition of the Palio dell’Assunta and three drawn from last year’s participants.
The 10 contrade participate in the Palio with a horse assigned by drawing from the horses physically fit for the race. Eligibility tests and the assignment of the horses take place 3 days before the Palio, on August 13. Before the Palio, there are 6 test races, during which the jockey gets familiar with the horse.
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
- 7.30 am – Mass of the Jockeys (La Messa del Fantino) in the Chapel of Piazza del Campo;
- 9.00 am – Provaccia, the last test race;
- 2.00 pm – Benediction of the Horses participating in the race;
- 4.00 pm – The closing of Piazza del Campo begins;
- 5.00 pm – The beginning of the Corteo Storico;
- 7.00 pm – The race begins.
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