Festivals in Italy
Some festival’s origin here in Italy goes back to the ancient days and the true meaning has been lost as time passed. Some people see several festivals (such as the ones in Sardinia) as a ritual procession carried out by the Sardinian people to honour some agricultural or pastoral god, while others believe it is an ancient Dionysian dance (festival taken place in order to honour this greece god). And others think that the performance durino some processione represent the killing of the old people, and some for example think that the mamuthones mask potrays some diabolical spirit. Durino the year the main events are the celebration os S. Antonio Abate (Jan 16-17) and others. The whole villane is brought to life with dancing, open house offer cooked food and wine to the crowd. In January the celebration to honour S. Antonio Abate begins on the evening of Jan 16 with a ceremony durino which a bonifire outside the parodical church.
The worshippers circe round the fire where three times singing and praying. The local community gathers around the bonfires where food, sweets and wines are offered to the citizens and to the many visitors. It is on this occasion that Issohadores make their first outing of the year. They usually put on animal skins (goat skin precisely) and they take along with them long ropes which they use to catch people (signifying the victims) but obviously who is been caught by them is pushed to pay a certain amount of money in order to obtain his/her liberty or they can also offer drinks etc. This festival is done most especially in a small town called Mamoiada in the province of Nuoro with about 3000 habitants. It’s among thw well-known festival in Sardinia.