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Course camarguaise

Glossary of terms connected with bull activities




The various activities involving bulls have ancient names. Many derive from former farming terms.

Bullfighting Glossary


Originally, the arrival of the fighting bulls from the fields to the arena, surrounded by gardians on horseback. Now special bulls are usually used for the event.
From Castilian Spanish: aficionado means “fan” or “devotee,” a person who has a strong taste or passion for something, in this case, for bulls. Someone who loves courses camarguaises and all things related to bulls.
Name given to people who try to catch the bulls during an abrivado or a bandido , to help them escape. It is a way for people on foot to get back at those on horseback.
Attente au fer
This action, in the ring or in the corral, is generally carried out by two gardians on foot with tridents, who wait for the bull without moving. When the bull charges, they check him with the tridents and teach him to be afraid of humans, which is essential in training a good simbéu (lead bull).
A small bit of red cloth attached to a string crossing the bull’s forehead ( cocarde ), white tassels attached to the horns ( glands ), and loops of string wrapped around the horns ( ficelles ). Their value increases the longer they remain on the horns during the 15 minutes that each bull spends in the ring.
Originally, the departure of the fighting bulls from the arena to the fields after the course , surrounded by gardians on horseback. Now special bulls are usually used for the event.
A term for a bull. A one-year-old calf is called an anouble . At two years it becomes a doublen , then a ternen at 3.
The process of castrating young biòus after they have reached three years of age.
The world of the Camargue bulls, the biòus. Those in the “ bouvino ” have the bull faith, la fé di biòu ).
Carmen (air de)
The music of Bizet is played for about 10 seconds to acknowledge a particularly fine performance by a cocardier .
Course camarguaise
This bull event is very popular in the East Languedoc area.
The course camarguaise (or course à la cocarde or course libre ) follows certain rules: A trumpet sounds and the bull comes out of its enclosure; a second trumput sounds after one minute and the raseteurs , gripping a hooked instrument called the crochet , have fifteen minutes to attempt to remove its various attributs .
This attribut is a bit of red cloth attached to a string running across the bull’s forehead. It is the first attribut the raseteurs must try to remove.
Small steel comb-like hooked instrument with which the raseteurs try to remove the various attributs . It is specially designed not to injure the animal.
Déjeuner au pré
“Lunch on the grass” is one of the highlights of every fiesta and takes place at a manade , when the gardians sort the bulls for their course that day. It normally includes grilled sausage and local wine.
Course or corrida marking the end of a raseteur’s or torero’s career. From the Spanish meaning “to take leave.”
From the Spanish encerrar : to close someone in. Event in which bulls (or vachettes , young cows) with protected horns are released to run in a corral or through the closed streets of a village or town. In general, this takes place in the evening during the fêtes votives or on Sundays in winter, while waiting for the evening bingo game to begin, to relieve the boredom of the off-season.
Procedure which consists in marking the left thigh of the anouble with the brand (similar to a coat of arms) of the manade and also marking its ears. The occasion is celebrated by an outdoor feast on the property of the manadier . The need to brand the animals in order to recognise them is considered to be at the origin of the bull games. The procedure takes place in several steps:
- the horsemen are presented and the manadier welcomes all present;
- the calf is driven toward the atrapaïres ,
- the calf is seized and branded
- the calf is released.  
Herdsman or cowboy who cares for and feeds bulls and cows. On horseback, he or she sorts out the bulls that will go to the arena for the course .
Term for a herd of more than five bulls; it can also refer to the fields or pastures where these herds are kept. The owner of a manade is called a manadier (or manadière if the owner is a woman).
Iron instrument used to brand animals. Also the mark left by the instrument on the thigh or flank of the animal. Herd to which the branded animals belong. Synonym: fer (hence, ferrade ).
Action which consists in passing as close to the bull’s head as possible, to try and remove an attribut with the crochet (hooked instrument).
A man dressed in white who tries to remove the maximum number of attributs to earn trophy points and prize money. He pockets the winnings at the end of each fight.
Release of horses to run in the streets of a town.
Course camarguaise in which six bulls in the same manade are presented. Thus the royale is named for the manade being presented. These take place from March to May. In the town of Saint Laurent d'Aigouze, a springtime series of royales called the “ Printemps des Royales ” is held annually.
This is a “one-person orchestra” playing a tune on a three-holed flute, le galoubet , and beating a drum at the same time. These traditional Provençal instruments have a historical tradition. They have been in regular use since the Middle Ages and there is evidence of them being played in our fiestas since the 14 th century. They exist in different sizes (length and diameter), and they are made of various woods: olive wood, oak, plywood ...there is even one made of glass!
From Castilian Spanish: bullfighting season. Starts the first weekend following the FFCC congress and ends in October.
Bullpen in the arena where the bulls are kept before the fight. There are two entrances/exits: one into the ring and the other toward the bull lorry.
On the morning of course or a ferrade, the manadier and his gardians close the cocardiers or cocardières (fighting cows) into the sorting pen. On horseback, they select the bulls or cows for the course. One or two people will do the sorting, although it is more honourable to do it alone. The most able horsemen can select bulls while trotting, and even separate them from the herd with no difficulty. Invariably, no matter what the manade or the team, a failure is always someone’s fault: a novice fan, a spectator, an adolescent cowboy, etc…
Trophée des As
Prize awarded in the same way as other trophies except the participants are those who have been classified in Category 1 by the “Ace Trophy” commission.
Trophée de l'avenir
A season-long series of courses for raseteurs under 24 years of age, taking place in several arenas; the points accumulated during each course determine a classification and the trophy is awarded to the young raseteur with the most points at the end of the season.

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