Pfluagziachn - Plough pulling in Stelvio

The “Pfluagziachn” (plough pulling) in Stelvio is a well-known carnival custom that can look back on a long history.

Among the age-old carnival customs in the upper Val Venosta valley are the “Proder Maschger” or the “Zusslrennen”, a special carnival party, as well as the “Pfluagziachn” in Stelvio (Stilfs). For a long time the custom was forgotten until it was revived in 1992 and now takes place every two years. On Saturday after the Fat Thursday the parade starts at noon.

The parade consists of the farmers, the servants and the travelling people who move through the streets of the village. Everything possible, they try to sell to the people. The central object of the parade is the plough which was used for harvesting potatoes in former times. The highlight of the “Pfluagziachn” is then the stealing of dumplings on the church square: the farmers eat dumplings with cabbage, but the accompanying people are also hungry and must try to get hold of a dumpling. They are fended off with threshing flails. But in the end everyone gets his dumpling and nobody has to starve…

Like the other carnival customs, which go back to ancient times and partly pagan rituals, the “Pfluagziachn” in Stelvio is also intended to chase away the evil winter demons and make way for spring. And as with the other customs, all roles are still reserved exclusively for men.

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