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Alessandro Franzetti...
Orange Battle
Ivrea Carnival & Orange Battle
The traditional orange throwing has its roots in the middle of the XIXth century. Earlier and more precisely in the middle ages, beans were used in this battle. We are told that twice a year the feudal lord gave a pot of beans to the poor families who, out of disrespect, threw them into the streets.The same pulses were also used at carnival as fun ammunition to be thrown at the backs of unsuspecting adversaries. Around the thirties and sixties of last century, girls started to throw some oranges from their balconies onto the parade carriages together with confetti, lupins and flowers. The targets of these were the boys by whom the girls wanted to be noticed. From the carriages the boys started to answer in kind and little by little, the gesture of homage became first a duel and then a real fight between the throwers on the balconies and those in the streets. Only after the Second World War did the battle become the present contest following fixed rules. Today the contest is still enacted in the main squares of the town where teams in carriages (symbolisingthe tyrantís guards) battle against the orange thrower teams on foot (the rebellious commoners) which consist of hundreds of throwers.Undoubtedly this is the most spectacular event of the festivities representing the fight for liberty,the symbol of the Ivrea Carnival. The orange battle is an incredible cultural and goliardic heritage putting the festival on a national and international level. The orange throwing is also the event with the greatest collective participation: anybody can take part by enlisting in one of the nine teams on foot or becoming a member of a carriage crew
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