LA LEGGENDA DELLE STREGHE DI BENEVENTOIf it is true that to trace the origins of the legend of the Witches must go back to ancient Samnite and Roman, when, in the fourth century BC with the ancient Lydians of Magna Grecia transplanted to Samnium the orgiastic cult of Cybele and when he sang Ovid the horrible owls are hungry for blood child, and also true that the saga – already known in the thirteenth century – spread rapidly in Italy and in Europe in 1600, when in Benevento, the true place of origin of the tradition, there was intense scholarly dispute over it. If other cities, in fact, drew from a famous Witches often sad, Benevento rather than evil and monstrous related processes, has the distinction of a charming legend that was born there, has inspired poets and artists for centuries. It was born when the belief of the existence of the Witches merged with the echoes of the mysterious orgiastic rites of the Lombards in Benevento that had made the capital of their vast southern duchy. In that distant seventh century, nostalgically loyal to national traditions, happy in the new land that had welcomed them and then had to absorb them with their conversion to Catholicism and adherence to the surviving Roman civilization, they practiced the cult of Wothan, the father of the Gods. They met as well, outside the city walls, around a sacred tree which sospendevano skin of a goat, and between a wild ride and the other hit her with arrows and he ate a piece. The Benevento looked terrified and fearful and their eyes to the Catholic rite seemed demonic, while the descriptions that made him increasingly turned and led him slowly in the field of wonderful. So even when the custom of these ceremonies ended for the conversion of the Duke Romualdo II and his people, who, fearing that he could not resist the Byzantine Emperor Constans II, promised the bishop San Barbato renunciation of idolatrous practices in exchange for salvation miraculously occurred, even when the nut demonic, therefore, was shot down, rumors of mysterious events continued to circulate. And so the legend was already formed, that the warriors were replaced evil women dancing frantically around the tree, to the cries of war had succeeded the din decomposed orgy, where even the devil took part in the shape of a goat, and instead of the fragment skin was engulfed even the banquet. And when the Lombards, amalgamatisi with the people won, increased its splendor of Benevento, especially by promoting the arts and letters, and even when, after various vicissitudes, the city became “the papal island” in the Kingdom of Naples, she adapted to the successive civilizations from that fervid and promising the late Middle Ages to the light of the Renaissance, the legend continued to live richer and richer and more varied reasons aspects, as long as the Baroque age spread with the shape then remained typical, one that describes the horde. In the vast esplanade of walnut gather magical night of the two thousand and more witches, guidatavi each by a demon guardian – Martinello or Jack – who is both lover and servant, and that before the ride, her greasy woman with a magic ointment, and there, in the light of the torches, after the revered leader of the devils that appears in the guise of the goat, which rewards the best witches and punishing those with whip infingarde, the orgy begins. And if you stepped in some neophyte who has renounced the true faith, the King of Darkness, after having made him swear on the blood squeezed from the left breast to be, as all the Witches, at least once a month adulterous and murderous and sow without stopping melefici and hatreds, assigns a Martinello and promises long life and pleasures of every kind. Now, if this terrible scene, which dissolves the invocation of Jesus and the Virgin Mary or the morning of ringing bells and roosters announcing the dawn, he found only among painters in Benevento an unknown and inexperienced interpreter century , which, however, in his naivete has been able to give us more than a little suggestion of the legend, poets, writers and musicians of very different stature dictated remarkable pages. From the author of The problematic flower, Ser During the fourteenth century, the merry Redi of The Hunchback of Peretola, by St. Bernardino of Siena, who was zealous calling for the extermination of malliarde in his fervent sermons, Agnolo Fiorenzuola several times a legend Benevento entered the real literature, as well as in music there penetrated with the knob of Benevento by Franz Xaver Sussmeyer, a pupil of Mozart and Salieri, then to inspire one of the most unique compositions of Paganini, entitled precisely The Witches. But in Benevento, aside from the pictorial and document the scholarly disputes that hardly exceeded the boundaries of the city, something that was to be built all over the world remember the legend with the same intensity and perhaps with greater continuity of many works of genius. That something – everyone who sees it is not exaggeration parochial – it was sublime liquor Giuseppe Alberti, its creator, for over a century, thanks to the quality sorceresses for the taste that distinguish it, could not call that witch.