Students studying abroad at Meredith’s Sansepolcro, Italy, location for the Fall 2012 semester recently participated in a centuries-old tradition. This is the fourth consecutive year that Meredith has been part of the event.
"It is an honor for Meredith students to be asked to participate, an honor that shows that we are seen to be a part of the town," said Betty Webb, director of the Meredith in Sansepolcro program.
Meredith students processed on the feast night of St. Egidio, the city’s patron saint. The event took place two days prior to the Palio della Balestra, a crossbow competition begun in 1619 and held twice each year between Sansepolcro and rival city, Gubbio.
A procession of Renaissance nobles passed through the streets, led by trumpeters and drummers dressed in Sansepolcro's town colors of black and white. Flag bearers, known as the sbandieratori, wearing rich orange, scarlet and blue-striped velvet tunics, joined them.
Meredith students processed in varied costumes that reflected the range of medieval women’s dress across the social spectrum.
"It was great fun to watch the people of Sansepolcro recognize Meredith College and a few even clapped for us," said student Rosanna Turchi. "It made me understand how welcoming these people are and how much they appreciate us coming and enjoying their wonderful town."
Seven students are completing Meredith’s semester program in Italy this fall.
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