Historic Regatta in Venice

Posted By: About Italy on September, 02 2008 in About Italy, Cultura, Da vedere, History, Venice
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As well as last year, on the first Sunday of September, the “Regata Storica” (“Historic Regatta”) will take place, the most important traditional event of Venice that occured for the first time on the 10th of January, 1315, during the government of the Doge Giovanni Soranzo. This ancient event, during the period of the Serenissima Republic of Venice, was organized to celebrate the war victories or to thank the foreign dignitaries and today it is divided into two different parts: the corteo storico and the regattas. Historic Regatta in VeniceThe Historic Regatta starts with a multicoulored acqueous procession made by the Bissone, the Bucintoro and by the Venetian rowing school boats; the procession remembers of the arrival of Cyprus’ queen Caterina Cornaro in Venice. But if the meaning of the procession is the historic remembrance, the regattas represent the highlight of the Venetian rowing agonistic season: during this day the victory allows you to be part of the Venetian rowing history. A long time ago the partecipation in the “Regata Storica” was permitted to all the citizens living in the territories of the Republic of Venice; however today the partecipation in the event is reserved to the citizens of Venice. The first race after the procession is the rookies one, with boats on two oars called “pupparini”, and then it follows the women’s regatta on “mascarete”, particular boats used by the courtesans a long time ago. The third race is rode with the “caorline”, a big six seat boat. But the most important race is the gondolas one, with only two oars; where the champions of the Venetian rowing are involved in a spectacular race on the Canal Grande. According to the tradition, the first classified receives a red flag and the other partecipants a white one, a green one and a blue one. To win this race is the desire of every Venetian oarsman. Together with the symbolic prizes, the tradition awarded the winner also with natural prizes, the most famous was an alive little pig, which was bound to be presented on a gondola. Thankfully this uncivilized tradition was abolished (but only a short period of time ago) officially because there have been a lot of complaints made by the animal rights associations. The organizers of the event, probably because of their ignorance, weren’t aware of the fact that pigs, despite of their apparently stupid behaviour, are some of the most intelligent animals and that their genetic code is, after the monkeys’ one, the most similar of the humans genetic code.

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2 Responses to “Historic Regatta in Venice”

  1. 1

    Wow great post, i never knew about this event! thank you :) Hopefully i can plan my trip to italy so that im there next time the event takes place :)

  2. 2

    Venice has always attracted me as a romantic destination. I wish and hope i can see it next year.

    Debra