Sardinia is one of the few western countries that has preserved virtually unchanged numerous descendants mysterious rites from a very distant past. One of these is the Carnival.
Carnival in Sardinia is said Carrasegare. Carre means living flesh and segare means cutting, tearing. Therefore, the term Carrasegare refers to the ancient Dionysian ritual that consisted in the sacrifice of little lambs in favor of the god.
Carnival anticipates the beginning of the spring, when the god, who died during the winter, reborns as vegetation. And it is at this time that the people ingratiates the favor of god through the Dionysian rituals.
In Sardinia, more than in any other part, those apotropaic rites remain through the transfiguration of people.
A Ottana, the main characters are three: Su Merdule, Su Boe and Sa Filonzana.
Su Merdule is the master of the ox, is a man with his traits deformed through a mask. He holds a stick and has the reins with which tames Su Boe.
Su Boe represents the ox, he wears a mask with long horns and forty kilos of cowbells. At different times during the parade he threw himself on the floor and shake as a sign of rebellion, while Su Merdule whips him, bringing him back under his control.
The third figure, the darkest one, is Sa Filonzana. She is an old and ugly lady. She spins the wool with the spindle and the distaff, and she holds the scissors with which threatens to cut the wire that represents the life of the person who stands before her.
This character is the destiny of the man and is linked to the belief that it would be a bad omen row in the house of a woman who has just given birth or that of sick people. If you break the wire is an omen of death.