The Historical Parade

The Historic Carnival of Ivrea
The Historical Parade

The Historical Parade at the Carnival of Ivrea includes numerous characters, all born in different eras: the Beautiful Miller’s Daughter (Violetta) with her Escort of Honour; Toniotto (her husband); the General and the General Staff, made up of talented officers and charming Vivandieres; the Assistant Grand Chancellor; the magnificent Podestà ensuring the freedom of the town; the Ensigns bearing the flags of the five districts, represented in turn by the Priors, and the band with their Pipes and Drums. The various characters participate in different parts of the Carnival: Epiphany marks the official opening of the festival, with the first outing of the beloved Pipers and the General’s  proclamation. On the third-tolast and penultimate Sundays of the Carnival, the main figures are the little Priors, who are lifted up to be presented to the crowds from balconies in their respective districts. On Fat Thursday, power is handed over from the Mayor to the General, who later goes to visit the Bishop. The climax is undoubtedly Saturday night when the name of the Beautiful Miller’s Daughter, the real heroine of the Carnival, is finally revealed from the balcony of the Town Hall. After this comes the first parade (on foot) through the streets of the old town, through a sea of cheering spectators. On Sunday afternoon, the Historical Parade proceeds in full for the first time. At its head, just behind the band playing the Carnival Song, sits the Miller’s Daughter with her ladies-in-waiting, on a golden chariot pulled by three white horses. This is the moment when the two essences of the Carnival, the Historical Parade and the Orange-Throwers, finally meet and pay tribute to each other. As the Parade passes through, the battle stops, allowing the Beautiful Miller’s Daughter to throw sweets, chocolates, mimosas and buttercups to the crowd.