Friday, January 1, 2010
Wake Up! It's 2010!! My Lucky Rooster Wishes You Good Luck!
Happy New Year! I found this adorable pitcher at the thrift store and knew my girls would love that water pours out of the rooster's beak. I thought about using it in this post because well, cock-a-doodle-doo it is time to wake up to the New Year. But then, after doing a little research I found out this little guy has a pretty fascinating history. He was made in Portugal, recently I am guessing, but the origins of rooster pitchers dates back to the early Renaissance period in the Republic of Florence, Italy.
"In the 15th century, the Medici family was the wealthiest and most powerful family. With all of their wealth and glory, the Medici patriarch, Lorenzo the Magnificent, and his brother Giuliano, had only one rival, the Pazzi family. The Pazzi family had a thirst for power. They were determined to quench that thirst even to the point of murder, which included the assassination of their rivals.
The Medici family owned a vast amount of land where peasants from neighboring villages would come to work. As a reward for their work, the Medicis frequently held extravagant feasts for these laborers. It was common to overindulge and to become so drunk that the revelers and all the guards would pass out and fall into a deep sleep as a result of their drunken state. These diversions were especially loved by Giuliano, a fact the Pazzi family knew well.
Using this knowledge, the Pazzi family devised a plan to have a conspirator suggest to Giuliano that a feast should be held for the perished village of Gallina. The Pazzis deviously planned to send their hired assassins to the village to wait until Giuliano and his guards fell asleep. They planned to assassinate everyone.
The feast honoring Gallina took place in the fall of 1478. Giuliano was present along with his guards, exactly as the Pazzis expected. Once the feast ended, the assassins crept into the village and proceeded through the barnyard. Unfortunately for them, their path through the barnyard woke the roosters, thus causing them to cluck hysterically. The noisy, clucking roosters woke the rest of the village. Giuliano and his guards captured the assassins and killed them.
Thankful for his luck with the roosters, Giuliano decided to hold another festival in honor of these lucky birds. He arranged for artisans to create majolica ceramic wine pitchers of these protectors and presented them to the peasants as a sign of good luck. As the years passed, it became an Italian tradition that has been dispersed throughout the world. Today, people continue to give these good luck majolica pitchers to friends and family. Most often, this gift of Good Luck is given as a housewarming or wedding gift to protect the recipients from any danger that may come their way."
By Ronnie's Specialities from Around the Globe
What a great story! And now I have one more good idea for housewarming and wedding gifts. So best wishes and good luck to you in 2010!!