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the Hampton Carousel Riding the Painted Ponies


By Bob Cerullo


T 14


here is a delicious irony in the fact that the carousel, which has brought so much laugh- ter and joy for young and old alike, has its origins in the deadly games of war. Knights in armor, Crusaders and other warriors, whose work it was to kill the enemy, have practiced their skills on what amounted to primitive carousels for centuries.


Before they actually fought wars or competed in murderous little war games, Crusaders honed their skills on warrior train- ing devices the Italians called “Carosella” and the Spanish called “Garosello.”


In the 13th century, the English hung a ring using brightly


colored ribbons from a tree or pole. One of the main events of tournaments became ring-spearing, in which a man would ride his horse or chariot full tilt, lance in hand, to spear the ring. The practice devices they used were actually primitive carousels and


May/June 2017


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