U zappatáure (the hoer)

From a rural community to UNESCO World Heritage site: Alberobello history is strongly characterized by these origins. You can find a deep love for this in every traditional dish, village sayings, custom and culture.

Lo zappatore, mestiere al quale Trulli Holiday ha dedicato un trullo per i suoi ospiti
Lo zappatore si puliva le scarpe con un apposito strumento posizionato immediatamente fuori dal trullo

The hoer was the most widespread job, but also the hardest in Southern Italy. Suffice to say that masters chose the most physically strong among the workers to dig the ground. Most of the 1900s were a hard time to feed the family and there weren't many alternatives: the strongest land workers hoed to obtain a meager daily wage.

The hardest work was "deep hoeing": before planting the vineyard it was necessary to eradicate the grass, the weed that sucked nourishment to the cultivated plants. To this purpose the most suitable hoe had a weight of about 5 kg that weighed on the arms and shoulders of the hoer.

For each purpose there was a particular type of hoe, as you can see in one of our trulli entirely dedicated to this old job. Other essential tools of the farmer were the different-sized sickles used to cut the different types of grass, also on exhibition in the trullo.

Lo zappatore in un momento di pausa fra i trulli di Alberobello
Lo zappatore davanti al trullo dedicato a questo antico mestiere

Even today, when the Alberobello people meet a visibly tired person, they are used to ask: "Did you go hoeing?". Finally technology helped farmers who began to use the plough to dig the ground. Below the main cone, you can admire an old one, difficult to find today.

Source: "Humanism of the Stone. Reflections", yearbooks 1999/2008. (Gino Angiulli, professor, geologist and writer). In the photos: Damiano Marzolla. He has always dedicated himself with love to the needs of his family, combining his work with a passion for the land that nowadays he still cultivates with high skill.

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