During the Tour of Masks we will also learn about the carnival masks of Orotelli.
The carnival of Orotelli, along with that one of Mamoiada and the one of Ottana, is one of the most beautiful and felt Carnival events in Sardinia.
The traditional mask is called Sos Thurpos which means the cripple. Sos thurpos parade through the town’s streets with faces painted black and wearing long tunics of coarse wool. This is a wool fabric, typical of Sardinia, obtained through a very special process that dates back to ancient times.
Sos Thurpos personify the protagonists of daily life of the shepherd.
The Thurpos Boes proceed in pairs like oxen under the yoke, and are obliged to proceed with a goad third thurpu. The Thurpos sowers scatter bran along their journey. The thurpu Vrailarzu which means the smith sometimes reaches Thurpos Boes and simulates the time when ferra oxen.
Another mask is to S’Eritaju, the obvious pagan origin, like almost all the masks of this area of Sardinia.
S’Eritaju, which means edgehog, parades dressed in a sackcloth of coarse wool of very light gray color, wearing a large cap and a red mask – amaranth, on the face. The peculiarity is determined by a large leather necklace that goes down to the chest, with big cork buttons covered by a hedgehog skin (erittu), which takes its name (Eritaju).
Its function is therefore that of chasing girls on the street and tighten in an embrace, to sting her breast, with the urchin spines attached to the necklace. S’Eritaju plays this ancient ritual of sexual initiation, breast, dell’aculeo puncture, blood with a clear reference to the virginity of women. It then becomes a ritual of propitiation and fecundity.
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