Medieval Events & Fairs
La Giostra della Rocca (The Joust of the Fortress)from September 07, 2014 to September 21, 2014
As the story goes, in 1239 emperor Frederic II passed by Monselice on his way to Padua. Our Joust of the Fortress (Giostra della Rocca) revives the traditional competitions based on skills, physical power and ability that characterised the festivals of the Middle Ages. The contest of bowmen, the trial of strength at the millstone, speed races, chess tournament, the spear joust and the horse tournament are the typical competitions of the Palio of Monselice.
Nine Districts have re-discovered the habits and traditions that used to characterise districts and villages. According to the strict rules that are updated every year, the districts compete in the various races and, together, they form the huge Historical Parade that files along the main streets of the town. Great interest is roused by the detailed reconstruction of big war machines: towers, crossbows, catapults, the pitch cauldron, battering rams and more, minor war instruments.
The districts participating in the Giostra della Rocca are the following:
2. CA' ODDO
5. SAN BORTOLO
6. SAN COSMA
7. SAN GIACOMO
8. SAN MARTINO
THE FOLKLORE OF THE JOUST REVIVES IN THE PARADE
Over one thousand walk-ons take part in the historical parade in the streets of the town centre. Costumes, war machines, workshops and groups of craftsmen plunge the town back in the Middle Ages for a few hours.
If races materialise the competitive spirit of the event, the historical parade along the central streets is the most imposing and spectacular part of the Joust. Suffices it to say that over one thousand walk-ons take part, and that each of the nine districts takes its Standard with the coats of arms, a group of armed soldiers, a full-scale war machine from the age, a group of craftsmen or a workshop, to end with the historical group or the historical figure representing the district itself. As usual the historical parade takes place in the morning of the third Sunday of the month; in the afternoon of the same day the quintain is tilted in the racing ground prepared in the Fortress Quarry (the Cava della Rocca). In an atmosphere of great merriment, when the town of the Fortress plunges again in the Middle Ages, the imposing parade files along the streets of the historical centre accompanied by drums rolling. On this occasion every corner of the town looks charming, and people can well realise the hard work that is required to stage the event. Besides the unbelievable war machines that are accurately reproduced into their tiniest details, enthusiasm is stimulated by the costumes of walk-ons and the typical traits of every district. If you come and see the parade, you may well understand why thousands of people attend this event every year.