Passions & Places


Rievocazioni Storiche 
The historical commemorations

The people of Le Marche have always shared a love for their history and traditions and over time this passion has inspired them to rediscover traditional festivals and events of the past such as ancient games and minor battles between countrymen. In this way, they have created an accurate and real portrayal of historical commemorations through jousts, parades, banquets, animations of hundreds of figures, and acrobats which, besides enriching the artistic-cultural resources, promote a renewed feeling of belonging in the citizens, with all being involved in the preparations and development of these moving events.

An example of such commemorations can be found in Piandimeleto in Pesaro where the ‘Palio dei Conti Oliva’ (Olive Counting Race) is held in commemoration of the medieval celebrations prepared for the cavalry on their return from courageous battles. In Urbino la ‘Festa del Duca’ (The Duke’s Festival) looks back at the splendours of the seigneury of Montefeltro. Every year since 1996, Fermignano has hosted the most curious ‘Palio della rana’ (The Frog Race) which sees frogs in wheelbarrows, acting as the protagonists in a challenge between the citizen quarters. In Cagli, the historical centre is transformed into an enormous ‘Giuoco dell’Oca’ (Goose Game), as practised in 1543, during Serra Sant’Abbondio’sPaio della Rocca’  (The Pair of the Fortress) the birds are directly involved and actually join in the lively geese race. Of great importance is Mondavio’s ‘Caccia al Cinghiale’ (Boar Hunt) which was inspired by the arrival in town of Giovanni of Rovere. It’s held yearly between the 13th and 15th August and takes the village a step back in time in its recreation of a beautiful Renaissance atmosphere.

Ancient traditions and events are also relived in the province of Ancona. In Corinaldo, the ‘Contesa del Pozzo della Polenta’ (The Well of Polenta Contest) takes place and in Jesi the ‘Palio di San Floriano’ (The Prize of Saint Floriano) renews a tradition dating back to 1227. In Offagna the Medieval Festivals propose the ‘Contesa della Crescia’ (Crescia Contest), where the four districts of the village challenge each other in arms. During Fabriano’s ‘Palio di San Giovanni Battista’ (The Prize of Saint John the Baptist) the historical centre returns to the atmosphere of 1300, whilst in Filottrano, the ‘Contesa dello Stivale’, (The Boot Contest) recalls the occurrences of the second half of the 15th century.

The  medieval commemorations are also very much a part life in the Macerata province, for example the ‘Palio dei Terzieri’ (The Tertiary Prize) held in Montecassiano, and the  ancient ‘Disfida del Bracciale’ (Bracelet Duel) of Treia. In addition, festivals include the ‘Palio dei Castelli’ (Prize of the Castles) in San Severino Marche, the ‘Corsa alla Spada’ (The Sword Race) in Camerino, the ‘Giostra de le Castella’  (The Castle Joust) in Caldarola, the Contesa della Margutta (The Margutta Contest) in Corridonia and the ‘Palio of San Ginesio’ (The Prize of Saint Ginesio) in Mogliano. Cingoli and Tolentino commemorate more recent historical deeds: Cingoli relives the splendours of the 18th century when the town offered hospitality to the Austrian troops on their way to Naples. Also in Cingoli, in true keeping with the perfect nineteenth century style, the town carries out the game of ‘pallone a bracciale’ (arm ball), whilst Tolentino recalls the Battle namesake, dating back to 1815 which took place between the King of Naples’ army and the Austrian troops.

In the Ascoli province, the streets of Fermo challenge each other in the ‘Cavalcata dell’Assunta’ (Ride of the Proposition) which dates back to 1182 and everybody comes out to compete in Sant’Elpidio a Mare’s  late medieval ‘Contesa del Secchio’ (Bucket Race). The ‘Torneo Cavalleresco Castel Clementino’ (Castle Clementine Chivalrous Tournament) of Servigliano celebrates the expansion of the communal ground which occurred in 1450, whilst in Monterubbiano ‘l’Armata di Pentecoste Sciò la Pica’ (The Pentecost Fleet) puts together religious traditions to rediscover the past Renaissance. Finally in Acquaviva Picena, the ‘Sponsalia’ recalls the illustrious marriage between Forasteria dei Duchi of Acquaviva and Rainaldo of Brunforte, which took place in 1234. Finally the splendid Piazza del Popolo of Ascoli Piceno hosts parades commemorating the historical Quintana.

© 2005 Liberation Ventures Ltd.


   Edit | Passions  |  Itinerary  |  Where To Stay
 | Map  |   Print  |