Penela Medieval Fair has two-day program dedicated to King Afonso IV

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Afonso IV, son of kings Dinis and Isabel of Aragon, will be the central figure at the 28th Penela Medieval Fair, which takes place on Saturday and Sunday in this town in the district of Coimbra.

The Town Hall, in collaboration with the Infante D. Pedro School Group and the Association of Parents and Guardians, “promises to delight residents and visitors with an event full of entertainment, culture and gastronomy”.

“Penela Castle will once again be the stage for a journey back in time, transporting visitors to the Middle Ages,” said the municipality, led by Eduardo Nogueira dos Santos, in a statement sent to the Lusa news agency today.

With a “wide variety” of initiatives and free admission, the program for the two days includes music, dance and theater shows, demonstrations of medieval crafts and activities for children, having been “designed for all tastes and ages”.

“We are excited to once again welcome the community and visitors to celebrate our rich historical and cultural heritage,” said the mayor, quoted in the note.

For Eduardo Nogueira dos Santos, the revivalist program is a “very special” event that “celebrates medieval tradition and gastronomy”.

As well as highlighting Penela’s cultural heritage and promoting visits to the municipality, the Medieval Fair “provides moments of fun and conviviality for the Penela family”, he added.

The program begins on Saturday at noon with the royal wedding of King Afonso IV and Infanta Beatriz, daughter of Sancho IV of Castile and Maria de Molina.

At 12:30 p.m., after the “minstrels’ parade through the streets of the town”, the wedding is announced by the town hall’s heralds and minstrels, followed at 1:00 p.m. by the “lavish banquet in the market taverns”.

The “royal procession” is scheduled for 4:30 p.m., with a series of afternoon events such as revelry, dances, merrymaking and the blessing of the fair.

On Saturday night, the festival closes with the “ancestral fires” and the “round of the alvazis and aguazis in the castle’s adarves”, between 00:00 and 00:45.

Sunday, from 12 noon, is dedicated to the wars of the kingdom of Portugal and the Algarve with Castile and the Battle of Salado, between Christians and Moors in the Iberian Peninsula, in which King Afonso IV distinguished himself at the head of his troops, earning him the nickname “The Brave One”.

The father of Pedro I, Afonso IV was also famous for having had Inês de Castro killed in the context of the Castilian noblewoman’s love affair with his son, a tragic episode that took place in Coimbra, on the left bank of the River Mondego.

The Medieval Fair, which coincides with the last two days of the second Gastronomic Hunting Week, ends with “witches, demons and all the evils that torment us” at 19:30, followed by the “sealing of kites, baskets and almotolias” at 20:00.

Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi

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