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Art Cities >> AREZZO
 
Arezzo is a luminous town on a hill which has preserved a big part of its medieval origins and lies at the margin of a basin, between Valdarno Superiore, Valdichiana and Casentino.
SOME HISTORY...

The Cities has Etruscan origins, with walls from the Roman period (4th century B.C.) when Arezzo played an important strategic and military role, and also provided the Patrician villas with prestigious red painted vases (so called coral vases). During the Middle Ages Arezzo was in war with the other Tuscan Cities and managed to win the war against Siena, only to then capitulate against Florence in the awful battle of Campaldino (1289). Arezzo became part of the Grand Duchy of the Medici as the rest of Tuscany. This was the beginning of the inexorable decline which reached its top when Arezzo was sold to Florence.
Discovering the Cities
CORTONA
LOCAL TRADITIONS
The most famous tradition in Arezzo is the "Giostra del Saracino" (The Saracen Joust) which is held every year the first Sunday in September in the splendid Piazza Grande.
The parade and the joust celebrates the period of the Crusades and the four "contrade" (quarters) of the Cities are the actors: Porta Crocifera, Porta Sant'Andrea, Porta San Lorenzo and Porta Santo Spirito. The participants of the 4 contrade parade in medieval costume from the square outside the Duomo to the Piazza Grande where the joust is placed. The puppet, which represents Saracino, has to defend himself from the assaults of the Cavalieri of the Contrade. The Saracino has a hammer and protects himself with a shield divided in sectors which feature different scores. The Cavaliere is supposed to hit the part of the shield which gives the highest score and at the same time, avoid Saracino's hammer.
 







































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