Feast of Saint Lodovico and Palio of the Archers

According to legend, Saint Lodovico saved the village besieged by the Lucca army in 1306 by appearing on the battlements of the castle, wrapped in a luminos cloud, to the enemy army. For this miracle, the patron saint is celebrated on August 19th with religious rites that culminate with a historical procession and bow challenges between the districts competing for the Palio.

“Palio of the Mercenaries” and “Palio of the Archers” are contested in a military camp into New Fortress, inspired by the medieval atmosphere of the 14th century, a historical period characterized by frequent battles and clashes between Lucca and Pistoia. “Palio of the Mercenaries” takes place on August 17th each year and it decides the assignment of four mercenaries to the various districts who compete for “Palio of the Archers” the following day (August 18th). It represents an bow challenge between the four districts of Serravalle, Masotti, Castellina and Ponte di Serravalle and the respective mercenary, who compete for the coveted cencio of the Palio, a painted canvas dedicated to the patron saint Saint Lodovico.

Leave a Reply