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Horses in the history of Sicily amidst art, culture and traditions

8 November 2019

Fieracavalli hosts the terracotta head of a horse dating from V century B.C.

Space for art at Fieracavalli. This season sees significant emphasis on the equestrian world, observed from a different perspective.

The Sicily Region pavilion has an exhibit of immense cultural value. A terracotta head of a horse dating back to V century B.C., from the Gela Archaeological Museum, associated with the famous Battle of Himera in 480 B.C. Known today as Termini Imerese, Himera was a dynamic and very productive town in cultural and artistic spheres.

Many finds have been made, including this terracotta horse’s head, which highlights the importance of horses and their role in the life and art of the times. The head, with large, almost human eyes and a heavy mane with parallel braids, is one of the equestrian groups depicting Dioscuri that surmounted the temple erected in Gela – the Athenaion – to celebrate the victory of the Siceliote troops over the powerful Carthaginian army commanded by Hamilcar.

“Ideally, we wanted,” said Edy Bandiera, Councilor for Agriculture, “to trace and faithfully reconstruct the long history of Sicilian horses. The intention is to hand it down to younger generations so that, with an eye to the past and traditions, they can look to the future of equine biodiversity in Siciliy.”

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