A Rapa das Bestas de Sabucedo

It treats of a tradition ancestral with a strong ritual component
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Fair/Popular festival

Among all the curros or rapas das bestas that take place in Galicia during the summer, the Rapa das Bestas of Sabucedo stands out for having preserved the purity of the tradition. This is the only curro in which the horse-handlers face the horses as equals, without ropes or sticks, to immobilize them and clip their manes. Young people from the parish start this off each year in a centuries-old tradition that runs in their blood, a way of understanding life in communion with horses. A code of actions that they learn from childhood, based on the actions and collaboration of three horse-handlers, is the way they establish the noble and dangerous struggle with the beasts in order to defeat them.

La Rapa of Sabucedo was always carried out in a stone enclosure (the curro) in the centre of town. For a few years, it moved to a new curro, made of masonry, where it is followed by a massive audience. The fame of the Rapa of Sabucedo, an ancient tradition with strong ritualistic qualities, has received the attention of anthropologists and scholars from all over the world. It is celebrated under the protection of San Lorenzo –some of the wild horses belong to the saint, that is, to the parish, and these are the ones that are sheared at the festival–, to whom the town prays at dawn mass on Saturday. Neighbours and visitors then go out to the mountain, with food to regain strength, to look for the horses and lead them to the curro, in a unique tourism and ethnographic experience.

Highlight:

The descent from the mountain with the residents of the parish, on Saturday, to gather the horses.

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