The Joust of the Saracens, in English, originated during the Middle Ages but was revived in its actual form in 1931. Every city’s neighborhood (“Quartieri”) has a team of knights armed with lances who try jousting the “Buratto Re delle Indie”, a wooden effigy representing a Saracen warrior.
The “Buratto” holds a shield with various scores: the knights’ aim is to hit it without being belted by the “mazzafrusto”, three heavy leather balls on the other Buratto’s hand.
The best team wins a Golden Lance and glory for its own neighborhood, of course. The Giostra del Saracino starts at 11 a.m. with a proclamation, then there’s a procession throughout the town, the blessing of the jousters, a parade and finally the competition.
This historical event in Arezzo ends with the Mayor introducing the winning Quartiere, giving it the Golden Lance.