ASSISI Art and tourist attractions -
The Calendimaggio :
the Ides of May Festivity
The Calendimaggio celebrations in Assisi trace their roots back to very ancient customs of celebrating spring that were used by civilisations even outside the Italian peninsula. These traditions were later transformed into celebrations of the goddesses Maia and Flora by the Romans, and later still into the Kalende di Maggio celebrations during the Middle Ages. Groups of young gaudentes sing, dance and serenade their way through the city's streets and squares as a means of celebrating the return of spring.
In Assisi the festivities are also linked to the centuries-old rivalry between the "Parte de Sotto" and the "Parte de Sopra" areas of the city. In 1300 the two factions, led respectively by the Fiumi and the Nepis families, engaged in a long and bloody struggle for supremacy that lasted for over two centuries.
On the last evening of the festivities the "Palio" is awarded in the neautral ground of Piazza del Comune by a jury made up of historians, directors and musicologists. The jury decides which of the two "Parti" has best interpreted the celebrations of the return of spring.
Palazzo dei Priori - Piazza del Comune, 11
06081 - Assisi
Info : Tel. 075.816868
Sito Web www.calendimaggiodiassisi.it
Servizio Turistico Associato - Piazza del Comune - CET 9:00-13:00 / 15:00-19:00. Info : Tel. 075-812534 / 075812923 Fax: 075-813727 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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