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The legend of Montagnana's red coats

Sunday 03 september 2017

A simple and brilliant stratagem that allowed the village to remain in Padova's domain

The legend of Montagnana's red coats

- Alarme, alarme!! I riva i veronesi ! Alarms, alerts, the Veronesi army is coming
- Cossa che fasemo???? What do we do ????

Thus, on one morning of year 1200, the peace of the daily market of the village of Montagnana was disturbed by a messenger carrying wicked news, the Veronese army were about to attack.

The inhabitants of the Padua hamlet were started preparing for the worse: they filled the moat, distributed food to overcome the siege, some messengers were sent to Padua to ask for help, while the councilors gathered in council to think about what to do.

- Spetè gó nà idéa! Wait I have an idea!

A simple but ingenious idea: create puppets and dress them in red drapes to symbolize soldiers ready to defend the city at the first danger and place them on the fortified walls of the hamlet.

Frachtly, all the red cloths were seized to make them into drapes and cloaks to dress up the wooden puppets built in a hurry to "increase" the Montagnese militia who would have watched from above the walls.

At the first lights of the next day, the Veronians arrived ready and in power to attack the village but saw the fortification gurarded by a number of soldiers far superior to expectations. In the meantime, the gates of the city opened, leaving the passage to a large militia ready to give the enemy a though time.

How we say in Milan "and the Veronesi remained with no words!" but not ultimately.

The stratagem did not last long but lasted enough to allow the militia from Padua to come to the rescue of the village.

Montagnana remained under Padua and today the day is celebrated, thanks to an edict, with a parade of red coats.

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