Hotel Torre Guelfa


Scoppio del Carro

Scoppio del Carro is a very ancient tradition of Florence. The exact translation of its name, Scoppio del Carro, is “Explosion of the Cart”. In fact, every Easter in front of the Duomo, a cart is set to explode in an extraordinary and colorful way, full of fireworks: a long time and beloved tradition for the florentine people.

Goffredo Di Buglione
The present form of Scoppio del Carro was assumed by the end of the 15th century. However, to find its origins, we have to get back in time to the First Crusade: Pazzino de’ Pazzi, a Florentine from an important family, is believed to be the first man to scale the walls of Jerusalem, in 1097. His commander Goffredo di Buglione then gave him a reward for his brave act: three flints from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. The flints were carried back tu Tuscany and are now kept in the Church of Santi Apostoli, just 30 meters from our Hotel.

Church of Santi Apostoli
After that, it became a tradition to set the “holy fire” from these flints on Easter day, from a cart that was carried throughout the city to be “distributed” to all the people in Florence.

Scoppio del Carro, the "Brindellone"
Today, the event consists in a march of the 30 feet tall antique cart, called by the florentine people “Brindellone” which was used already 500 years ago. The “Brindellone” is carried from Porta al Prato to the Duomo, escorted by soldiers, artists and many other people in 15th century dress. The fire is still struck using the flints from Jerusalem. The cart, loaded with fireworks, is lit by the cardinal of Florence after the Gloria in Excelsis Deo during the Easter Mass, while the bells of Campanile di Giotto ring with joy.

The fireworks of Scoppio del Carro last about 20 minutes, and a good successful fireworks show is very important: it is supposed to guarantee good luck, stable civic life and good business.

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