This post is to remember in photographs a parade of carriages and their teams on a morning when the weather played fair.
The setting was Napoli, and it was the Sunday of the last weekend in May 2016. The occasion was to commemorate a day in 1734, also in the month of May, when 18-year-old Carlo di Borbone rode into the city of Naples on the brink of becoming its king.
We joined the parade during its pause in the grand space of the Piazza del Plebiscito – perfect for the display and turning of carriages.
Beautiful horses, expertly handled, dealt quietly with the wait and the attention.
The crowd was a mix of the curious and those just passing.
The huge space of the piazza, a luxury anywhere, provided the perfect frame for the occasion …
… and the gleam of well-groomed horses suited its stage.
Everyone was dressed up, and out to look their best.
The brightest colours came from Sicily.
Each painted carriage was a work of art.
The kings on their prancers must have relished the company.
Ladies stretched their legs …
… thankful for the breeze on a warm day.
There was plenty of ‘bella figura’, patience, and cheerful hands-on curiosity in the huge space of the Piazza del Plebiscito.
When the parade moved off at the end of the morning it trotted its way past Vesuvius …
… its clatter and colour in contrast to the blue stillness of the volcano.
Maschio Angioino, the medieval castle that would have been almost five hundred years old by the time the young Carlo di Borbone rode into the city, stood indifferent to the brief ruffle around its feet.
Young horses trotted in the hoof-prints of centuries …
… and the traffic made way for the unexpected with hardly a blink.
Just another day on the roads in Naples …
… a reminder of a small chapter in the lives of all that have passed through this city … and the horses were at the heart of it. They didn’t have to be big to take part …
they just had to be handsome … and they were.
Copyright Georgie Knaggs & The Phraser 2018