Sansepolcro and the Crossbow Competition

12.09.2021 17:30 - 20:00

In numerous cities in Italy, during the Medieval Age and the early Renaissance, many competitions took place for crossbow shooting, the aim was to encourage free citizens to practise, that way there was always a military reserve to defend the town if needed. In Sansepolcro since 1594 documents report a crossbow competition which was fought between the city of Sansepolcro and the nearby town Gubbio in the region of Umbria.

It takes place on the second Sunday of September in the central Piazza Torre di Berta. Around eighty bowmen take turns at the shooting range and try to hit the exact centre of their target.

The Palio is preceded by a week of events and historical re-enactments, including the “Offering of Wax” ceremony at the Sansepolcro Cathedral with historical procession, the Palio dei Rioni, the traditional challenge between Porta Romana against Porta Fiorentina, the two districts of City and the Sant’Egidio Market.


Wednesday 8 September
9.00 pm: Palio dei Rioni in Piazza Torre di Berta. Challenge between the crossbowmen of Porta Romana and Porta Fiorentina

Thursday 9 September
9.00 pm: Propitiatory concert of the Palio in Piazza Garibaldi. The protagonists are the Philharmonic Society of Perseverants, the Domenica Stella Choral and the Città di Piero Chorus.

Saturday 11 September
Sant’Egidio market, historic center for the whole day. By the Ass. Renaissance in the Borgo
9.00 pm: Flag Games in Piazza Torre di Berta. Information: Sansepolcro Flag-waving Group

Sunday 12th September
5.30 pm: Palio della Balestra in Piazza Torre di Berta.


The Palio will be with the presence of the contingent public. Reservations can be made at the Valtiberina di Sansepolcro tourist office or at +39 0575.740536

Sansepolcro and the Crossbow Competition

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