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Panzano in Chianti will celebrate the “Festa della Stagion Bona” (Festival of the good season) on April 25 with ox drawn carriages, hooded men and a final hanging.

The festival returns thanks to the Organization, il Grondino. The day is based on facts that really happened.

Between the Gherardini family of the Montagliari Castle and the Firidolfis of the nearby Panzano Castle, blood was spilled.

One day, two of the Gherardinis killed Antonio, brother of Luca di Totto de’ Firidolfi. Luca swore vengeance, as was customary, but the two who were searched for “in towns and forests”, escaped to Naples.

Luca, occupied with other business, was able to fulfill his promise of vengeance 4 years later, in 1346, when he found out that the remaining brother (one was killed in Naples) was going to eat at Santa Margherita Montici, near Florence.

He gathered armed friends and they attacked, “destroyed buildings” and captured Gherardini. As Luca wrote in his memoir, “Let’s get him and send him to Paradise”.

The youth of Il Grondino reenact the ocurence in Panzano in Chianti every April 25 afternoon, sometimes changing the script for the show: the murderer is either beheaded or hung, always after a juicy trial where the judges are the Lords of the castles dressed in epoch costumes.

On April 25, from 11 AM til late at night, the streets of the village host the Medieval commemoration with a parade of street artists and flag throwers, stands with traditional street food, artisan markets, medieval games and, for the grand finale, fireworks!

The town will breathe a Medieval atmosphere for the entire day. In the early afternoon, there will be the presentation of the feud between the two families which will involve the entire town.

The scene begins in the church sacresty, where the procession begins. It follows the village streets to the piazza where, the long trial takes place on two stages. The public anxiously awaits the final hanging.

Stands with traditional dishes will be open for dinner. At 11 PM, the fireworks will begin…then music in piazza until late in the evening. Free entrance.

Matteo Pucci