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Rosanne  Rosanne is offline
Join Date: 08 Dec 2004
Location: North Auckland,New Zealand
Posts: 5,917

Wonderful image!
As to other places I am not sure, but in Florence the parade that became the Carnival was once part of the- and on the same day as The Procession for the festival of Saint John the Baptist. It was the mingling of the profane and the sacred that was the problem- so they split the two. There were very few days that the Parade or the Procession were canceled and these were mainly to do with weather. It seems that in Florence the first grand Procession (with Floats and carriage) was noted in 1402 after Pisa had been captured. It is noted that the parade was in the classic form from 1343- 1480- the grandest period was 1443 -1480.
For that particular image in Florence you would have to go back to the roots of the Procession- it was about Victory- red cariocchio pulled by red dressed bulls, with a bell and heaped with banners. The same thing happened when they lost a battle. It was considered the day the Commune was defeated or victorious-The Commune iself bore the weight of either.

From Richard C Trexler in the book Public Life in Renaissance Florence
Embedded in the political functionalism, sacred procession, the basic elements of the San Giovanni festa that have been reviewed were slowly embellished with feudal games and various theatrical elements (dance, song, poetry, edifici, gift giving, competition, tournaments, animal hunts)
In 1453- the red red carriage led Parade failed to halt the tremors of an earthquake- everyone had to give the poor money in hope that that would work. They did not even cancel the Parade in 1494 when Charles V111 threatened to sack the City- it became like the year of the Plague, a crisis Parade- sometimes a disaster Parade- mostly a Victory Parade. In Florence it was canceled when the Medici died. This all went unabated until Pope Leo X was elected in 1513.
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