Carnival 2018

Carnival in Cagliari has its roots in the post-war period: in 1946, Tonino D'Angelo and Pinuccio Schirra, founded the “GIOC” Association (Italian Catholic Working Youth), making the historical city centre, and in particular Stampace district, the theatre of a popular, noisy and colourful carnival.


Its unmistakable rhythm is marked by the sound of Sa Ratantira (also known as Sa Ratantina), an onomatopoeic term that recalls the sound of drums. It is characterized by a varied set of crafts, human or fantasy characters, such as Su Tiaulu (the devil), Sa Viura (the widow), Su Palliazzu (the clown), Sa Panettera (the baker).


Carnival in Cagliari is also a triumph of delicacies, as tzippulas and parafrittus.


Tzippulas (fried doughnuts sprinkled with sugar, made with flour, eggs, milk, potatoes and flavoured with a pinch of saffron) were already present in the Ancient Rome cuisine as fried doughnuts called "zippula".


Similar in form but different in dough (made with butter or lard but without saffron addition) parafrittus means literally "fried friars". Why associate these carnival sweets with the figures of the friars?


For their brown colour with a lighter strip in the middle and for the hole in the centre, which recall, respectively, the friar's tunic with the cord tied to the waist and the tonsure on the head.


To greet the noisy and sacrilegious Carnival atmosphere, there is time until the following Sunday, that of Pinata, dedicated this year to Vespiglia, a funny tribute to Sartiglia, the famous race of Oristano carnival.



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