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Italians fight it out in the traditional 'Battle of the Oranges'

Sunday, March 02, 2014 - 01:02

March 2 - Italians swarm into the medieval town of Ivrea to pelt each other with oranges, re-enacting a centuries old legend of tyranny and the fight for liberty. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Hundreds of revelers on Sunday (March 2) poured into Ivrea, Italy to re-enact the northern Italian city's historic 'Battle of the Oranges'. The annual event sees large crowds dressed up in medieval costumes engage in a spectacular citrus clash bombarding each other with juicy oranges from Sicily. Legend has it that back in the 12th century the daughter of a local miller rejected the advances of the town's evil lord. She cut off his head and set Ivrea free from his tyranny. The battle recalls the insurrection against the tyrant with participants split into noblemen and commoners with the oranges representing the oppressor's head. In the 1930s local girls started to throw oranges along with confetti and flowers from their balconies onto the carnival parade carriages so that the boys would notice them. From the carriages the boys would throw items back. With time the gesture became first a duel and then a real fight between the throwers on the balconies and those in the streets. The battle became the present contest following fixed rules only in recent history, after the Second World War. The game was transformed into a spectacular event representing the fight for liberty and the symbol of the Ivrea Carnival.

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Italians fight it out in the traditional 'Battle of the Oranges'

Sunday, March 02, 2014 - 01:02