mercoledì 9 marzo 2011

Palio del Viccio - Palo del Colle (Puglia)

What is Palio?

It is the name given in Italy to an annual athletic context of a historical character, pitting the various districts of a city against each other in an event involving horses and knights in a race or a competition.

The oldest one is held in Piedmont called Palio d'Asti but the one better known internationally is Palio di Siena.

In Puglia every year during the Carnival on Shrove Tuesday and the last sunday of July is held the Palio del Viccio, a very picturesque,  traditional and ancient festival from the XV century.

Palo del colle is a rural town 10 km from Bari the capital of Puglia on a hill with views over the sea and the countryside. To visit is the Cathedral dedicated to St. Maria della Porta, a quite good example of Apulian-Romanesque architecture. The tall Bell Tower, the only original part of the Building is 49 metres high decorated with mullioned windows.
In Palo there are ten rione (districts), each of them selecting a horseman to participate to the competition.  

Every participants carry long poles and attempt to pierce a blister of water suspended in the air over the street.
Originally Viccio that in dialect means Turkey it was the prize for the knight on a horse trying to decapitate the animal and to win

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