Bosa Carnival

The Carnival of Bosa, known as Carrasegare Osincu, has a deep and ancestral tradition that, like all the carnivals that take place in Sardinia, draws on the deep Sardinian tradition and history. The Bosano Carnival is very popular and felt by all the local inhabitants, has a long duration and also includes the interruption of school activities for a few days. It is expected as a fundamental moment by the citizens, the same children in the schools together with the teachers choose a theme at the beginning of the school year and realize, floats and parades in the city, each class a different theme, creating an atmosphere of colours and fantasy without limits in the city.

The start is given by the party called Giogia l’Aldaggiolu (lardazholu) where numerous masked groups play instruments created for the occasion and sing in the streets of the town asking for a reward and visiting friends and relatives singing “Muttettus a trallallera”, receiving in exchange “Sa palte ‘e cantare”, food of all kinds.

The mask of “Gioggia laldagiolu” is characterized by a turned jacket, a little cork soot on the face and a cane or a stick transformed into a spit, in which to pierce meat, fruit or food, representative for Carnival, continues with Shrove Thursday where the spontaneity of the masks can be seen everywhere, when often there is a parade of school floats, then on Saturday called “the Saturday of the cellars” where the owners of the cellars offer a glass of wine and traditional dishes to the festive people. Evening concerts and daily dances are held until Shrove Tuesday when the end of the carnival is celebrated with a funeral lament by S’Attittidu. Those who want to disguise themselves will be totally dressed in black: a long skirt, a corset and a black shawl. The peculiarity is that each mask has with it a doll, a puppet made of rags called Gioldzi.

Source of the picture

As they walk through the streets the S’Attittadoras ask passers-by, especially women, Unu tichirigheddu de latte, a drop of milk for the dying baby, various sexual meanings are hidden behind this rittuality. At the same time, the streets are filled with people dancing traditional dances, such as su ballu de sas kadreas (dance of the chairs), su ballu ‘e s’iskoba (dance of the broom) or su ballu tundu¹, eating and drinking local Malvasia wine. With the arrival of the evening, the colours of the streets change: black figures become white, symbols of carnival souls. The participants wear white sheets and walk the streets with lanterns in their hands in search of Gioldzi. Once they find the puppet (GIOLDZI), they burn it in one of the bonfires that that evening illuminate the streets of the city. The carnival reveals various hidden meanings of a sexual nature, as an example when, at nightfall, white souls chase each other, dressed in white, and one mask captures another, illuminating their genitals in search of Gioldzi.

In many texts and studies that we have read, the Carnival of Bosa becomes a collective ritual that makes disorder the canvas for an explicit sexual allegory, during which we make fun of everyday life, there are explicit references to pagan rituals that also evoke the bacchanal and the need for freedom after the winter famine.

If you want to be amazed and involved, you cannot miss the Bosa Carnival, joy, conviviality, fun.


  4. Ruiu F. S., Concu G., Maschere e carnevale in Sardegna, editore: IMAGO