The Ernani hat is now more than ever a symbol of our fight against new adversities
The hat with the feather, appearing in the Ernani logo, has a quite vast symbolic value - from a Milanese and Italian perspective - but forgotten and that is now coming back more than ever before.
Which is the origin of this hat?
Its first Europe appearance dates back to the sixteenth century, and it was used by the bourgeois class as a symbol of wealth, as the feathers came from exotic birds of the new colonized territories.
It was also a symbol of modernity and openness to new discoveries, very important values at Ernani, as they are the basis of our corporate philosophy.
This fashion soon disappeared from the bourgeois world and transmigrated to the military and political world.
In 1844 the feathered hat was adopted by the revolutionaries during the uprisings against the Borboni royal family in southern Italian Kingdom, quickly becoming the emblem of resistance to oppression and a sign of recognition among revolutionaries from all over the peninsula.
Giuseppe Verdi also liked this spirit of renewal, so much so that he had this feathered hat worn by the protagonist of his work "Ernani": a heroic bandit, actually a Spanish nobleman, who fights injustice and tyranny. On the evening of March 9, 1844 in Venice Ernani was performed for the first time and from that moment it immediately became a popular culture background of the rebel movements over the Italian Risorgimento period. The work resonated with constant invitations to fight against tyranny, with exhortations to the love of the homeland and represented the ideals to which many aspired. The exact same ideals of freedom that we want in 2020 today.
The hat with the feather, in 1848, was prohibited by Lanzenfeld, general director of the Milan Police of the Habsburg Empire, as it was a performance of adhesion and support to the cause of Italian independence.
Despite this, the Milanese citizens, at the outbreak of the Five Days of Milan, 18-22 March 1848, continued to use it, both men and women.
The first to launch this new fashion was Princess Cristina Trivulzio of Belgioioso, muse and passionate of our Risorgimento, represented herebelow.
The hat went up to one of the most famous and appreciated bodies of the Italian Army: the Alpini. Since their establishment in 1872, they took back the hat said to Ernani as a symbol of subversion and love for the homeland. For this reason it became significant for our entire national history.
Finally, a painting that is very close to our heart: Hayez's "The Kiss". A highly evocative painting of meanings that underlie our work, such as passion, love for Italy, overcoming censorship, ideas of freedom and justice.
Even today, all this is perceived as real and true.
In a moment of fragility and insecurity, in which we feel disappointed and disheartened, we need to recover hope, passion, certainty and authenticity.
The same painting is then taken up and modified, with "dramatic" irony, which well represents the current period that is going through the whole peninsula.
The Caffè Ernani team
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