History of the Italian Ceramic Rooster

Many people have asked me recently about why the rooster is so prominent in Italian Ceramics.  In this article we’re going to share the history of ceramic roosters to help you better understand why these are some of our favorite pieces. The reason for this is because it’s held a large part of history dating all the way back to the 1400s during the Renaissance time.

History of the Italian Rooster

During this time in Florence the wealthiest and most powerful family was the Medici family.  The second most wealthy family were the Pazzi’s.  The Pazzi’s wanted to be the most powerful and ruling family in country.  During these days it was quite common for family’s to battle it out by killing each other for power.

 

The Pazzi family was set out and hell bent on getting this power so they came up with a plan.  The Medici family threw parties all the time and invited anyone in the area to come to their home.  Since the Pazzi family knew this about them, they decided to have people in the village to convince them to have a party one night.

Renaissance Period Italy

The Pazzi family decided that they were going to wait until everyone was drunk late at night after the party before they would sneak in and kill them.  They hired some assassins to sneak into the courtyard of the home and carry out the mission.  There was a little problem though when the assassins arrived – the courtyard was full of roosters.  These roosters started crowing and woke up all of the guards and the family.  The assassins ended up being caught and held for questioning.  After finding out who sent them there and why they were sent, they ended up killing them.

 

The Medici family was so excited about the roosters saving them and alerting them to the intruders they decided to have a party again the next night.  They had their artisans make ceramic roosters to drink out of and all of the people in the villages were given one to take home with them.  These roosters now represent good luck and good health and it’s clear to see why.

 

Now that you know the history of these you can write a little note and send one as a gift to your friends or family.  They will appreciate the gesture and be able to share the tradition for years to come.

Another great idea is to give these to your new neighbors as a house warming gift, especially if they are Italian!