Giraffa

Summary

Colors Red and white
Symbol Giraffe
Flag Giraffa
Terzo Terzo di Camollìa
Headquarters Via delle Vergini 18
Museum Piazzetta della Giraffa 2
Clubhouse Società “La Giraffa”, via delle Vergini
Contradaioli Giraffini
Oratory Chiesa del Suffragio, nella cripta della Collegiata di Provenzano
Paitron Saint Madonna della Visitazione (31 may)
Enemie(s) Bruco (dal 1945 al 1996)
Allied contrade Civetta (dal 1923)
Istrice (dal 1795)
Pantera (dal 1781)
Valdimontone (dal 1781 al 1963)
Victories 36 officially recognized
Website http://www.contradadellagiraffa.it

Info

Territorium

The Bando di Violante di Baviera from 1730 determined the division of the city of Siena into 17 Contrade. People referred to buildings and their owners instead of the streets (as they do now). The document is still seen today as the basis on which the actual boundaries of the districts were determined.

Today, the following streets are part of the area’s territory:

  • via delle Vergini
  • via Sallustio Bandini (part)
  • via del Moro (part)
  • via del Refe Nero (part)
  • via Lucherini
  • via di Provenzano
  • vicolo di Provenzano
  • vicolo del fontino
  • via San Pietro a Ovile
  • via del Giglio
  • via dei Rossi (part)
  • piazza San Francesco (part)
  • via dei Baroncelli
  • via del Fosso
  • vicolo della Viola
  • piazza Provenzano Salvani
History

Giraffa and the number 3. It’s a winning combination! Giraffa, for example, won 3 times a Cappotto. Nobody equaled, let alone exceeded this.

Giraffa 3In addition, the Contrada of Provenzano won three Palios linked to important events in the history of Italy. First, Giraffa became a Contrada “Reale” after winning the Palio on July 16, 1887 due to the presence of King Umberto I d’Italia and Queen Margherita di Savoi. In the presence of King Vittorio Emanuele III and his wife Queen Elena, they also won the Palio of July 2, 1936, dedicated to the Italian colonial empire. This also made them “Imperiale.” Finally, they also became “Repubblicana” after the victory of the Palio on 16 August 1946, in the presence of the provisional head of the Republic of Enrico De Nicola.

“Reale, Imperiale, Repubblicana” was the title of the Numero Unico of 1946. Only the title “Imperiale” is still used in the official name of the neighborhood.

Important locations and Festa Titolare

The Oratory of Giraffa is actually the crypt of the Basilica di Provenzano and was built between 1595 and 1604 by the Medici. After a lot of discussions with the church about the use of this space, it was donated to the neighborhood in 1824 to make it an Oratory. Later the museum was also housed in the crypt of the church.

The baptismal fountain is located on the Piazzetta della Giraffa just before the Oratory and was designed by Salvatore Bocci.

Giraffa 1

The Festa Titolare in honor of the Madonna della Visitazione is celebrated on May 31. The same Maria is also celebrated on July 2, but throughout the Palio. That is also the reason why after a victory in July the Palio must be brought to the Basilica di Provenzano to sing the Te Deum. (in August this is the Duomo)

Giraffa and the Palio

Giraffa has 36 officially recognized victories. The last one dates from 2 July 2019, with Giovanni Atzeni (Tittia) on Tale e Quale.

Giraffa won no less than 3 Capotti. The first in 1807. In 1897 they won their second. Exactly 100 years later, in 1997 they even won a third. An absolute record.

In Siena it is said that you should win every 7 years. Giraffa is a neighborhood that realizes this: 1990 – 1997 (2x) – 2004 – 2011.

You can find all the drappelloni won here. The Numeri Unici are also online.

Anecdotes

On the night of September 23, 1967, the Palio was stolen from the church of San Vigilio. The drappellone, painted by Bruno Marzi, was designed for the Palio Straordinario of 24 September in honor of the conference that took place for the promotion of Science. Because there was no longer a palio, the city was forced to mount the original sketch on a white canvas to replace the drappellone.

The Palio is won by Giraffa with Rosario Pecoraro (Tristezza) on Topolone (who then named Ettore).

The legend goes that “in the evening, during the party in Giraffa, there was a phone call from the thieves. These turned out to be students from the University of Bologna, who had stolen the Palio. (a student joke that got out of hand?) They realized that the Palio of Siena is quite a serious matter for the Sienese and regretted their act.

A few days later, the original Palio was brought back to a secret location where the students left the drappellone. To avoid an (unpleasant) confrontation, it was requested to disappear immediately after leaving. However, Giraffa refused to give the “sketch” back to the city, which means that there are now 2 drappellone hanging in the Giraffa museum, neatly next to each other.

A contrada without rivals
Giraffa 2

Like many others, Giraffa and Bruco were rivals due to disputes around the neighborhood’s borders. Everything was settled in 1996 after the victory of Bruco after 41 years of waiting … Despite the fact that the cessation of hostility was even made official, there is still hatred of the others, especially with older contradaioli.

Images

Victories

1 27/04/1655 Bacchino ?
2 28/07/1686 Pulcino ?
3 16/08/1689 Pulcino ?
Total victories in de 17th century : 3
4 16/08/1715 Cappellaro Bolso
5 16/08/1731 Pettinaio Inoscato
6 02/07/1745 Barbarisco baio del Bonucci
7 05/07/1750 Bechino sauro
8 03/07/1794 Mattiaccio baio chiaro del Gigli
Total victories in de 18th century : 5
9 16/08/1805 Caino morello maltinto del Fontani
10 03/07/1807 Botto sauro del Ricci
11 16/08/1807 Mattiaccio baio chiaro del Manetti
12 02/07/1852 Cilla morello del Cicali
13 15/08/1862 Bachicche storno del Ceccarelli
14 15/08/1865 Liberato morella bruciata dell’Orlandini
15 16/07/1887 Il Moro Farfallina
16 04/07/1897 Scansino Febo
17 16/08/1897 Massimino Febo
Total victories in de 19th century : 9
18 02/07/1907 Rancani Ida
19 25/09/1913 Testina sauro balzano del Socini
20 16/08/1923 Randellone Lola
21 16/08/1929 Garibaldi Orfanella
22 02/07/1936 Bovino Ruello
23 16/08/1946 Ciancone Piero
24 16/08/1954 Veleno Gaudenzia
25 24/09/1967 Tristezza Ettore
26 02/07/1970 Bazza Topolone
27 16/08/1971 Bazza Orbello
28 16/08/1983 Moretto Panezio
29 16/08/1986 Truciolo Fenosu
30 02/07/1990 Bastiano Galleggiante
31 03/07/1997 Il Pesse Lobi’s Andrea
32 16/08/1997 Il Pesse Quarnero
Total victories in de 20th century : 15
33 02/07/2004 Salasso Donosu Tou
34 16/08/2011 Brio Fedora Saura
35 02/07/2017 Scompiglio Sarbana
36 02/07/2019 Tittia Tale e Quale
Total victories in de 21st century : 4

Giraffa grants itself 6 additional wins, not recognized by the City of Siena:

  • 1629: bufalata
  • September 1718: Palio rionale organized by Nicchio.
  • 1751: Palio rionale organized by Nicchio.
  • 1790: Palio rionale organized by Torre.
  • August 17, 1875: Palio “alla romana”: winner Consolation between the neighborhoods that were excluded from the final, won by Filippo Meloni detto Barbone. (with a Palio alla Romana three batterie were driven. The winners of each batterie rode the final).
  • Giraffa also exhibits the Palio of August 16, 1730. However, this was not driven due to the theft of the “Sacre Particole” from the Basilica di San Francesco. However, it is not known why and how that Palio ended up in the museum.

Drappelloni and Numeri Unici

Drappellone and Numeri Unici can be found on pages on our Dutch website (pages will open in new tab) :

Debuting fantini

  • Since July 2, 1775, 483 fantini debuted on the Piazza
  • In 1928, no less than 9 fantini debuted (in 3 courses).
  • 21 fantini won their debut.
  • Giraffa had 33 fantini debuting since 1775
  • None of the won on his debut
  • The longest period without a debutant is 21 years : 2/7/1958-4/7/1979
1 Giannino di Tirli 16/8/1798
2 Mangiagatte 14/5/1809
3 Ferrino 2/7/1811
4 Fainotto 2/7/1817
5 Sbarbatino 18/8/1822
6 Mangia 18/8/1841
7 Pettiere II 18/8/1842
8 Toto 16/8/1853
9 Pilesse 16/8/1857
10 Citto 4/7/1869
11 Sordo 16/8/1874
12 Brunetto 4/7/1875
13 Pagliarone 2/7/1878
14 Bruscolo 4/7/1880
15 Caratello 3/7/1882
16 Truci 16/8/1884
17 Dannato 16/8/1886
18 Birichicchi 16/8/1887
19 Bozzetto 16/8/1889
20 Chiodi Luca 3/7/1892
21 Scansinetto 2/7/1905
22 Memmo 17/8/1920
23 Boccaccia 3/7/1932
24 Ciancone 16/8/1945
25 Gelato 2/7/1951
26 Veleno 2/7/1954
27 Solitario 2/7/1958
28 Gringo 4/7/1979
29 Moretto 17/8/1980
30 Castangia 2/7/1984
31 Salasso 2/7/1995
32 Velluto 16/8/2000
33 Bellocchio 2/7/2014

Never happened

Below you will find events that have never happened before and that cause some kind of superstition in the contradaioli. MAI or never is of course a relative term. The further we go back in time, the less data is stored and the more uncertain we become.

Giraffa has never :

  1. won when they were selected as 1st or 5th (estrazione)
  2. on from position 5, 7 and 8 at the start or as rincorsa
  3. won a palio after being extracted with Civetta or Lupa or Nicchio or Oca or Onda or Torre or Valdimontone
  4. won an august palio after being extracted with Civetta or Drago or Istrice or Lupa or Oca or Onda or Pantera or Selva or Tartuca
  5. won a palio alla romana
  6. won a palio with cavalli scossi
  7. won a palio when Drago or Tartuca was rincorsa
Last update : 21 november 2019