Medieval Jousters on Horses in Cortona

22 Oct

For days, we had heard that the horses were coming, yet no one I spoke with knew why. Today, as with many days in Cortona, we were surprised and delighted with a colorful Medieval spectacle.

As overheard in the piazza, the nearby city of Arezzo has been highly victorious in jousting competitions this year. They came to Cortona today, dressed in their finest and with their victors high on horseback, to give thanks to their patron saint, Margherita. One of the participants told me this was a festival of adoration to their patron saint in appreciation for their success this year.

From our house, I heard the drummers and arrived just in time to see them enter the piazza from Via Roma.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

A few minutes later, the horses and jousters appeared in full matching Medieval regalia.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Once the horses took their places,

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

the flag wavers entered and all watched as they performed.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

In Italy, flag waving and throwing is a skill learned by the young and perfected over many years. It is an important part of many of the Medieval festivals and ceremonies, and one that requires years of practice.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

When the performance was finished, they joined the dignitaries on the grand steps of the Municipio for the speeches of gratitude.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Following the ceremony in the piazza, the parade moved down Via Nazionale, the main and only flat street of Cortona.

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©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Their ultimate destination was the beautiful Santa Margherita Church at the top of Cortona –

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©Blogginginitaly.com

where the saint lies in glass at the foot of the altar.

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In towns and cities all over Italy, ancient customs live on in the hearts, minds and practices of the people who received them from their ancestors and pass them on to future generations. It’s easy to get caught up in the pageantry and imagine days gone by. No matter how often I see one of these, it’s always quite a spectacle to behold.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Ciao,
Judy

Note: Click on any picture to enlarge.

 

 

12 Responses to “Medieval Jousters on Horses in Cortona”

  1. Jean October 22, 2016 at 11:15 AM #

    Wow my daughter will love these pictures!
    Darn we just got here and missed it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • blogginginitaly October 22, 2016 at 11:23 AM #

      Sorry you missed it. So many of these are always such a right time right place.

      Like

  2. Patricia October 22, 2016 at 12:01 PM #

    Beautiful photograph,s as always. Thank you Judy. These are the things I miss!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. bestson808 October 22, 2016 at 1:22 PM #

    Aloha Judy,

    I feel like I am there with you & Leonard. Hope to see it someday in person.

    Please keep the photos coming.

    All the Best,
    Charles

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Royce Larsen October 22, 2016 at 1:38 PM #

    How Neat!

    This had to remind Len of Rimrock

    Thank you

    ________________________________

    Liked by 1 person

    • blogginginitaly October 22, 2016 at 3:43 PM #

      Len said you’d like the post. He also said you should plan a visit. I agree!

      Like

  5. Dominic Mosca October 22, 2016 at 10:08 PM #

    Nice story

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Helen October 23, 2016 at 11:17 AM #

    Looks a great spectacle. Will be there next year 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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