Discovering the Carnival: The Vezzosa Mugnaia

Discovering the Carnival: The Vezzosa Mugnaia

Official presentation: Saturday 2nd March 2019, 9pm, Piazza di Città
Emblem of freedom, the Mugnaia is the most important figure of the Historical Carnival of Ivrea. Daughter of a miller and Toniotto’s new wife, she started the popular uprising by killing the disliked lord of the city, who not only oppressed the inhabitants of Eporedia, but also required to spend the first night of marriage with the brides, according to the practice of ius primae noctis. Violetta, this is the name of the girl, swore that she would oppose to this custom and so during the night, thanks to a dagger that she had hidden in her clothes, she cut off the head of the Marquis and showed it to the people of Ivrea, triggering the insurrection. Set in the early Middle Ages, the legend of Violetta probably recalls a revolt linked to the introduction of a tax on the ground: at the time, in fact, the processing of wheat through watermills was very widespread in the area of Dora Baltea.

Elected each year since 1858, the year in which the character was introduced, her identity is kept confidential until the evening of Saturday, when she is presented to the citizens from the balcony of the town hall. Although her name is Violetta, in town you will hear more often about her as “Vezzosa Mugnaia” or “Signora”. Who has had the privilege of being named Mugnaia, will be Mugnaia forever for all the Eporedians. On Saturday evening the Mugnaia runs through the streets of the city center in her first walking tour accompanied by the General, her Escort and the other characters of the Historic Procession. Sunday and Tuesday will instead parade from the golden chariot.

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