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One of the most beautiful countries in the world, Italy is well known for its rich art and culture, and for its numerous landmarks. With 54 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, more than any other country in the world, and an estimated 100,000 monuments of any sort (churches, palaces, museums, fountains, sculptures and archaeological remains), Italy is home to about half of the world’s artistic treasures. And if you are looking for inspiration, find below a list of the most famous tourist attractions …

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    Church of Santa Maria dei Miracoli

    The Church of Santa Maria dei Miracoli is a beautiful church in Venice, located in the sestiere of Cannaregio.   SHORT HISTORY The church was built between 1481 and 1489, at the behest of the Lombard merchant Angelo Amadi, who desired a proper shrine for a painting depicting the Virgin, inherited from his uncle, Francesco Amadi. The painting, dating back to the beginning of the 15th century, was considered miraculous by the inhabitants of the area. The project was entrusted to the architect Pietro Lombardo who, with the help of his sons, Tullio and Antonio, designed and built this small church. One of the first Renaissance-style churches built in Venice, it was renovated during the 16th century, without changing its external appearance. In 1997, the church was the subject of a careful restoration, which allowed the locals and tourists alike to fully enjoy its artistic beauty.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE The facade, divided into five sectors by pilasters, has two orders. The lower order, with Corinthian capitals, is architraved, while the upper one, in Ionic style, is composed of 5 blind arches. Above the facade, there is a large semicircular pediment, decorated with a rose window, 3 oculi and 2 Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Morosini Sagredo

    Palazzo Morosini Sagredo, also known as Ca’ Sagredo in the Venetian dialect, is a palace in Venice, located in the sestiere of Cannaregio, overlooking the Grand Canal between Palazzetto Foscari and Palazzo Giustinian Pesaro.   SHORT HISTORY The palace was built starting with 1382, at the behest of the Morosini family, in particular at the will of Michele Morosini, Doge of Venice for a few months. At the beginning of the 18th century, the building was purchased by Gerardo Sagredo, relative of the more famous Nicolò Sagredo, the 105th Doge of Venice. Under the new ownership, the building was restored by the architect Andrea Tirali, who built the monumental staircase and had the attic decorated with stucco. The architect Tommaso Temanza also worked on the project. In 1913, the palace was sold by the Sagredo family, and later was restored to its former glory by the Superintendency of Fine Arts in Venice, being declared a National Monument. Today, Ca’ Sagredo is a 5-star hotel which features an impressive art collection. The hotel has 42 rooms and suites sumptuously decorated, and public areas which display masterpieces by famous Venetian artists of the past.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE The facade of the Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Bembo

    Palazzo Bembo is a palace in Venice, overlooking the Grand Canal, located in the San Marco district (sestiere), not far from the Rialto Bridge and next to Palazzo Dolfin Manin.   SHORT HISTORY Palazzo Bembo was built in the 15th century by the Bembo family, by merging several Byzantine style buildings dating back to the 11th century. Over the centuries, the interior of the palace was remodeled several times, but it maintained its original external structure, except for the shape of the attic. Today, the palace houses the hotel Palazzo Bembo – Exclusive Accommodation and it is also an exhibition space of contemporary art.   ARCHITECTURE The facade of Palazzo Bembo has a clear Venetian Gothic appearance, with its three levels of lancet windows. The polifora on the third floor, with the beautiful balustrade, stands out. The floors are separated by stone bas-relief frames. Inside, there is a 17th-century staircase overlooking the internal courtyard that leads to the main floor, where we can find decorations in Baroque style dating back to the same century.   HOW TO GET THERE The closest vaporetto stop is Rialto, located about 50 meters away, on the waterbus Lines 1 and 2. To find the Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Ruzzini

    Palazzo Ruzzini is a palace in Venice, overlooking the Grand Canal, located in the sestiere (district) of Cannaregio, near the Fondaco dei Tedeschi and the Rialto Bridge.   SHORT HISTORY A fairly recent palace, Palazzo Ruzzini was built near the end of the 19th century on the site of the ancient Fondaco dei Persiani (Warehouse of the Persians), a building demolished in 1830.   ARCHITECTURE The palace was built in neo-Renaissance style, with an extremely schematic facade characterized by the contrast between the color of the bricks and that of the Istrian stone that frames the openings. On the ground floor, there is a water portal flanked by two triple-light windows. On the second floor, there are six mullioned windows, and the coat of arms of the Ruzzini family, dating back to the second half of the 14th century. On the third floor, there is a four-light window in the center, divided by Corinthian columns, and four mullioned windows on the sides, all decorated with balustrades. The fourth floor is similar to the one below, the only difference being the triple-light window in the center. On the fifth floor, the attic, there are six rectangular windows and a recent coat Read more [...]

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    Fondaco dei Tedeschi

    Fondaco dei Tedeschi is a large palace in Venice, located in the sestiere of San Marco, overlooking the Grand Canal near the Rialto Bridge.   SHORT HISTORY Fondaco dei Tedeschi (Warehouse of the Germans) was built around the same time as the Fondaco dei Turchi (Warehouse of the Turks), in the first half of the 13th century. The palace was the landing point for goods brought by the German merchants from Nuremberg, Judenburg and Augsburg. The original palace was destroyed by a devastating fire on the night of January 28, 1505. Soon after, the Venetian Senate decided to rebuild it on a project by Girolamo Tedesco. The reconstruction took place between 1505 and 1508. The building was owned for a long time by the Italian Post Office. In 2008, the palace was purchased by the Benetton Group for an amount of 53 million euros, and was restored by the Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas. The palace was converted into a shopping center and was opened to the public on October 1, 2016.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE Fondaco dei Tedeschi is a large building with a square-plan and three levels around an internal courtyard, covered by a glass and steel structure. The Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Querini Papozze

    Palazzo Querini Papozze is a palace in Venice, located in the Cannaregio district (sestiere), overlooking the Grand Canal between Palazzo Correr Contarini Zorzi and Palazzo Emo a San Leonardo.   SHORT HISTORY The palace was built in Byzantine style for the Querini family, who owned it until the 19th century. Later, the palace was renovated in Gothic and Renaissance styles, and was partially destroyed by a fire on October 21, 1815.   ARCHITECTURE The palace is characterized by a large but simple and functional facade, with rectangular openings. The facade has 43 windows on four floors and three doors on the ground floor. The coat of arms of the Querini family on the facade is a recent copy. Of the ancient building, only a well remains in the courtyard and a porch overlooking the rear. Inside the courtyard, there is a large garden, which, among its peculiarities, has a bridge built during the 19th century.   HOW TO GET THERE Palazzo Querini Papozze is located near the intersection of the Grand Canal with the Canale di Cannaregio. The closest vaporetto stop is Guglie, located about 250 meters away, on the waterbus Lines 4.1, 4.2, 5.1 and 5.2.

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    Palazzo Correr Contarini Zorzi

    Palazzo Correr Contarini Zorzi is a magnificent palace in Venice, located in the sestiere of Canneregio, overlooking the Grand Canal between Palazzo Querini Papozze and Palazzo Gritti. The palace is also known as Ca’ dei Cuori (House of Hearts), given the presence of wrought iron heart decorations on the facade.   SHORT HISTORY Palazzo Correr Contarini Zorzi was built in 1678 by the noble Correr family on the site of an ancient Gothic palace, of which only the corner columns survived. Later, the palace passed to the Soranzo, Zorzi and Contarini families. The roof terrace was added in the 20th century, when the palace was owned by the de Mombell family.   ARCHITECTURE The palace has a majestic 17th-century facade overlooking the Grand Canal, characterized by the presence of two imposing monumental water portals, marked by arched heads and composed of a main opening surrounded by four quadrangular windows. There are two noble floors, of equal importance and with the same design. They are characterised by the presence of a mullioned three-light window with a small balcony, positioned to the left, flanked by other mullioned windows, which also continue on the side facades. Frames of Istrian stone highlight the symmetrical Read more [...]

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    Church of San Simeone Piccolo

    The Church of San Simeone Piccolo, also known as Santi Simeone e Giuda (Saints Simon and Judas), is a church in Venice, overlooking the Grand Canal, located in the sestiere of Santa Croce, in front of the Santa Lucia railway station.   SHORT HISTORY The original church was founded in the 9th century by the noble families of Adoldi and Briosi, and was consecrated on June 21, 1271. The ancient church probably had a basilica plan with three naves and was built parallel to the Grand Canal. In 1718, the rebuilding of the church began under the direction of the architect Giovanni Antonio Scalfarotto. The works were completed 20 years later, and the religious building was consecrated on April 27, 1738, being one of the last churches built in Venice. Today, the Church of San Simeone Piccolo is the only church in Venice where the Mass is celebrated in Latin.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE The church is modeled on the Pantheon of Rome, with a cylindrical body, a copper-clad dome and a Corinthian pronaos. The pronaos set against a circular plan is a solution already adopted in the twin churches of Piazza del Popolo in Rome. It is surmounted by Read more [...]

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    Piazza della Frutta

    Piazza della Frutta (Fruit Square), once called Piazza del Peronio, is a beautiful square in Padua, dominated by the imposing Palazzo della Ragione. Together with the nearby Piazza delle Erbe, Piazza della Frutta was, for centuries, the commercial center of the city.   SHORT HISTORY The area was inhabited since pre-Roman times, as evidenced by numerous archaeological finds. According to some, it was a site of trade already during the Roman age, but owes its current conformation to a period between the 10th and 11th centuries. The square was occupied by numerous shops and stalls, selling all kinds of goods, especially vegetables and fruits. With the construction of the Palazzo della Ragione at the beginning of the 13th century, an attempt was made to arrange the various points of sale – under the hall, the sellers of fabrics and fur were installed, the vendors of poultry and game to the east, the sellers of fruits and vegetables to the west, while the removable stalls with leather were placed in the center of the square. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the medieval houses enclosing the square were renovated, with the rectification of the arcades. In the first half of the Read more [...]

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    Loggia del Consiglio

    Loggia del Consiglio is a beautiful Late Renaissance palace in Padua, located in the southwestern corner of Piazza dei Signori. Beginning with 1240, when the large hall of Palazzo della Ragione was destroyed in a fire, the city’s council met in the Loggia del Consiglio, hence the name of the building. The palace is also known as the Loggia della Gran Guardia, because it was used as a military commandment during the Austrian domination.   SHORT HISTORY The elegant Mannerist building was designed by Annibale Maggi from Bassano, and built starting with the year 1496. The works proceeded slowly and were often interrupted by long pauses, of which the longest was after the Siege of Padua by the Roman Emperor Maximilian I, in 1509, during the War of the League of Cambrai. The work resumed in 1516 under the guidance of Biagio del Bigio from Ferrara, and later, starting with 1530, continued under the direction of the architect Giovanni Maria Falconetto. Faconetto, due also to his work on the Torre dell’Orologio, played an important role in the new configuration of the square. In 1866, the Loggia del Consiglio became part of the municipal patrimony, and was subsequently used for cultural Read more [...]

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    Torre dell’Orologio

    Torre dell’Orologio is a medieval clock tower in Padua, located between Palazzo del Capitanio and Palazzo dei Camerlenghi, in Piazza dei Signori.   SHORT HISTORY The tower was built in the first half of the 14th century, as a fortified entrance to the Carrarese Royal Palace, owned by the noble family of da Carrara, Lords of Padua. However, its current appearance is due to the works began 1426 at the behest of the Captain Bartolomeo Morosini, concluded with the inauguration of the clock on the Feast of Saint Anthony from 1437. The astronomical clock that dominates the square is the oldest mechanism of its kind in the world. It is actually a reconstruction from 1436 of the clock built by Jacopo Dondi in 1344, and placed on the tower of the southern gate of the Carrarese Palace. The clock is the work of Matteo Novello and Giovanni and Gian Pietro delle Caldiere. In 1531, the nobleman Vitale Lando comissioned the large triumphal arch located at the base of the tower to the architect Giovanni Maria Falconetto. In June 2010, the monument undergone a careful restoration work that affected both the architectural structure of the tower and the mechanisms of the Read more [...]

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    Palazzo del Monte di Pietà

    Palazzo del Monte di Pietà is a medieval palace in Padua, located near the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, on the northern side of Piazza Duomo.   SHORT HISTORY The palace was built between the 13th and 14th centuries, and it belonged to the famous moneylender Rinaldo Scrovegni. At the beginning of the 14th century, it was destroyed by a fire and subsequently abandoned. The palace was taken over by the noble family of da Carrara, and with the annexation of Padua by the Republic of Venice at the beginning of the 15th century, the building became the property of the Venetian government. A fire damaged much of the building in the first half of the 16th century. Doge Andrea Gritti, at the request of the bishop Pietro Barozzi, sold the palace for 10,000 ducats to the Monte di Pietà institution, founded by the Franciscans a few decades earlier to combat usury. The renovation of the facade was entrusted to the Veronese architect Giovanni Maria Falconetto, who redesigned the building on the basis of the six-arched loggia and the perimeter walls that survived the fire. The headquarters of the Monte di Pietà was inaugurated in 1533, while in the following Read more [...]

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    Piazza delle Erbe

    Piazza delle Erbe, also known in the past as Piazza delle Biade (Corn Square), Piazza del Vino (Wine Square) or Piazza della Giustizia (Justice Square), is a beautiful square in Padua, located in the historical center of the city. The square is dominated by the magnificent Palazzo della Ragione.   SHORT HISTORY The area dates back to pre-Roman times, as evidenced by the numerous archaeological finds. Although the place was destined for trade since the imperial age, its current conformation dates back to a period between the 9th and the 11th centuries. After the construction of the Palazzo della Ragione at the beginning of the 13th century, the various shops were reorganized – under the portico of the palace, the sellers of fabrics and fur were installed, the sellers of wrought iron in the east of the square, the sellers of wine in the west, while the stalls with grains and leather were installed in the center of the square. The goldsmiths were located under the portico of the Palazzo del Podestà, built also in the 13th century in the eastern side of the square. In the 18th century, the arcades of the medieval houses located to the south of Read more [...]

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    Porta Liviana

    Porta Liviana, known also as Porta di Pontecorvo, is a city gate in Padua, part of the Mura Cinquecentesche (16th Century Walls). The gate now appears detached from the walls and therefore presents itself as an isolated monument. Originally, the walls were linked to the sides of the gate, where today two semicircular niches can be seen.   SHORT HISTORY The walls, also known as the Mura Veneziane, were built by the Venetian Republic during the first decades of the 16th century, as a project of the captain Bartolomeo d’Alviano. The walls were protected on its west flank by a canal known as the Fossa Bastioni. The construction of the Porta Liviana was begun immediately after the Siege of Padua from 1509, in the context of the War of the League of Cambrai. It was the first gate to be completed in 1517, and was probably based on a design by the Lugano architect Sebastiano Mariani. The gate was dedicated to Bartolomeo d’Alviano, who died on October 7, 1515.   ARCHITECTURE The gate is actually a cube of 16 meters on each side, with the arches of the passage underlined, on the two opposing facades, by pilasters, entablature and tympanum Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Zacco al Prà

    Palazzo Zacco al Prà is a beautiful palace in Padua, located on the western side of the square of Prato della Valle.   SHORT HISTORY The construction of the building was begun on December 19, 1555, commissioned by Marco, an exponent of the Zacco family of Padua. The building was designed by Andrea Moroni, and probably incorporated some pre-existing buildings. The construction was completed in less than two years and, by 1557, the palace was already occupied by its owners. The Zacco family resided in the palace until the early 1800s. One of the last major events that took place in the palace was the stay of the Austrian Emperor Francis II of Habsburg and his wife, Carolina Augusta of Bavaria. On June 27, 1839, the last descendants of the historic owners sold the building to the Armenian Mekhitarist Congregation. Four years later, the palace became the Collegio Morat. Later, the property was taken over by the municipality of Padua, which in 1904 ceded it to the Italian state. Palazzo Zacco was declared a building of artistic interest on April 24, 1925. Occupied by various Military Commands, Palazzo Zacco became the Padua headquarters of the Officer’s Club of the Italian Read more [...]

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    Basilica of Santa Giustina

    Basilica of Santa Giustina, dedicated to Saint Justina of Padua, is an important Catholic church in Padua, located in the square of Prato della Valle.   SHORT HISTORY In the 6th century, the praetorian prefect Venanzio Opilione built a basilica on the site of the tomb of Saint Justina of Padua, martyred in 304. The basilica, which in the meantime was flanked by an important Benedictine monastery, collapsed due to the earthquake of 1117. The church was rebuilt in the following years, reusing what remained of the previous construction. Between the 14th and the 16th centuries, the choir, the sacristy and the Chapel of San Luca were built. In this period, the adjacent monastery was also rebuilt. Starting with 1501, a new construction was begun on the project of Girolamo da Brescia. After abandoning the da Brescia project, the monks entrusted the work to Sebastiano da Lugano and then to Andrea Briosco. After the death of the latter, the direction of the work passed to Andrea Moroni and then to Andrea da Valle. The huge construction site lasted for more than a century. The basilica was solemnly consecrated on March 14, 1606. Following the Napoleonic ecclesiastical laws, the abbey was Read more [...]

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    Loggia Amulea

    Loggia Amulea is a neo-Gothic style palace in Padua, located on the western side of the beautiful square of Prato della Valle.   SHORT HISTORY The Loggia takes its name from the cardinal Marco Antonio da Mula, known also as Amulio, who founded in Padua the Collegio Amulio and the Compagnia del Gran Nome di Dio, dedicated to the assistance of orphans. He owned a palace in Prato della Valle, which was destroyed by a fire in 1822. The Municipality of Padua then decided to built a new palace. Initially, the building was supposed to be divided into cafes, dance halls, game rooms, theaters, but later it was preferred to be used for military purpose. Around 1860, among the various competing projects, it was chosen the one presented by the architect Eugenio Maestri. The palace was the seat of the Padua fire brigade between 1906 and 1989. It currently houses some municipal offices.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE The front of the building is characterized by an elegant loggia, a two-storey neo-Gothic structure which recovers medieval elements, especially in the use of architectural decorations in terracotta (architraves, tiles, pilasters). Between the lower arches of the loggia, there are the statues of Read more [...]

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    Torre Velasca

    Torre Velasca is a skyscraper in Milan, located in the homonymous square. Its name derives from the name of the Spanish politician Juan Fernández de Velasco, Duke of Milan in the 17th century.   SHORT HISTORY The building was designed by Studio BBPR for the company Ri.C.E. (Ricostruzione Comparti Edilizi SpA), which in 1949 obtained from the Municipality of Milan the license to build a multi-storey building for mixed commercial and residential use, following the devastation inflicted by the heavy bombings of the Second World War. The design studies began in 1950, with the collaboration of the Turin engineer Arturo Danusso, and were immediately directed towards the creation of a new symbol of the post-war rebirth of Milan. The final design of the building was completed in 1955, and was approved by the client and carried out by the General Real Estate Company between 1956 and 1957. The construction work lasted 292 days, ending eight days ahead of schedule. Following some changes of ownership in the 2000s, the building passed to the Fondiaria Sai, part of the Ligresti Group and, subsequently, after the merging with Unipol, it became part of the real estate assets of the new company UnipolSai, which Read more [...]

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    Church of Santa Maria del Carmine

    The Church of Santa Maria del Carmine is a beautiful church in Milan, located in Piazza del Carmine, in the Brera district.   SHORT HISTORY In 1268, the Carmelites settled near the Castello Sforzesco, where, starting from the 14th century, they began to build their convent and an adjoining church, which was destroyed by fire in 1330. The current church was built beginning with 1339 on a project by Fra Bernardo from Venice. The works were completed in 1446 by the architect Pietro Antonio Solari. As soon as it was finished, the vault of the church collapsed and, only three years later, the restoration work began. In the 17th century, the presbytery was radically restored in Baroque style and assumed its current conformation. The current facade, built in 1880, is the work of Carlo Maciachini.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE The facade of the church overlooks the square of the same name. Built in 1880 in a rich neo-Gothic style, it is the work of Carlo Maciachini, famous also for the design of the Monumental Cemetery of Milan. The facade is divided by large pilasters, each surmounted by a Gothic canopy. Above the central portal, there is a mosaic lunette with Read more [...]

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    Temple of Victory

    The Temple of Victory (Tempio della Vittoria), known also as the Memorial to Fallen Milanese Soldiers (Sacrario dei Caduti Milanesi), is a monument in Milan, located in Largo Agostino Gemelli, near the apse area of the Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio.   SHORT HISTORY The monument, dedicated to the memory of the Milanese soldiers who fell during the First World War, was built on a project by the architect Giovanni Muzio, with the collaboration of Alberto Alpago Novello, Tomaso Buzzi, Ottavio Cabiati and Gio Ponti, between 1927 and 1930. According to tradition, the memorial is located on a site where, in ancient times, there was the cemetery of the martyrs of the early Christian era, to which martyred soldiers of the First World War relate. The monument was inaugurated on November 4, 1928, with a great ceremony, in which the Prince Emanuele Filiberto, Duke of Aosta and commander of the Italian Third Army during the First World War, read the text of the Victory Bulletin to the huge crowd present, composed mainly of veterans from 1918. Severely damaged during the heavy bombings of Milan from 1943, the monument was rebuilt after the war. It was expanded in 1973 with the large memorial Read more [...]

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    Columns of San Lorenzo

    The Columns of San Lorenzo (Colonne di San Lorenzo) is a late Roman monument in Milan, located in front of the Basilica of San Lorenzo Maggiore, near the Medieval Ticinese Gate (Porta Ticinese Medievale). The Columns have a particular emotional meaning for the Milanese, testifying the history of the ancient Mediolanum, capital of the Western Roman Empire between the 3rd and the 5th century.   SHORT HISTORY The Columns of San Lorenzo were brought here in the 4th century, to form an atrium in front of the ancient basilica. The columns came from various Roman buildings dating back to the 2nd or 3rd century, probably from a pagan temple located in the area of today’s Piazza Santa Maria Beltrade. Until 1935, in the current square located between the Columns and the Basilica of San Lorenzo, there were old buildings, which were demolished to give greater coherence and monumentality to the basilica. The new square was subsequently occupied by the tram tracks, which in the 1990s were moved beyond the Columns. In 1937, the bronze statue of the Emperor Constantine was placed in the square, a modern copy of the antique original preserved in Rome.   ARCHITECTURE The Columns of San Read more [...]

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    Basilica of San Lorenzo Maggiore

    Basilica of San Lorenzo Maggiore is one of the oldest churches in Milan, and together with the Columns of San Lorenzo, located a few meters away, is considered an important Roman monumental complex. The church is dedicated to Saint Lawrence, one of the seven deacons of Rome, who was martyred in 258 during the persecution of the Christians by the Roman Emperor Valerian.   SHORT HISTORY The church dates back to a period between the end of the 3rd and the beginning of the 5th century, and was built on the remains of a temple dedicated to Hercules by the Emperor Maximian. The church was damaged by fire in 1071 and 1072, its dome collapsed in 1103, and it was destroyed again by fire in 1124. The church was then rebuilt in Romanesque style, maintaining the original internal layout. During the Middle Ages, the basilica remained a symbol of the Roman heritage in Milan, and a privileged burial place for the city’s bishops. In 1573, the dome of the church collapsed once again during a liturgical celebration. Given the importance of the building, Cardinal Carlo Borromeo comissioned the architect Martino Bassi to rebuilt the dome according to the tastes of Read more [...]

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    Torre Bissara

    Torre Bissara, also known as Torre di Piazza, is a medieval tower in Vicenza, about 82 meters in height, located in Piazza dei Signori, adjacent to the famous Basilica Palladiana.   SHORT HISTORY The tower was built in 1174, at the behest of the Bissari family, next to their palace. Between 1211 and 1229, the Municipality of Vicenza bought both the palace and the tower. After it was spared by the terrible earthquake of January 25, 1348, it was raised towards the middle of the 15th century to its current height. Over the centuries, there were numerous interventions to maintain the stability and beauty of the tower. On March 18, 1945, the tower, together with the Basilica Palladiana, was hit by an Anglo-American bombing. The top of the tower caught fire and the dome collapsed to the ground. The bells also fell, destroying the pavement of the square. In the following years, along with the Basilica, the tower was rebuilt, not without controversy concerning the form, partly different from the original one. In 2002, a radical restoration of the tower began. The intervention concerned the consolidation of the tower and the restoration of surfaces, friezes and decorations.   ARCHITECTURE At Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Porto in Piazza Castello

    Palazzo Porto in Piazza Castello, also known as Porto Breganze, is a palace in Vicenza, located in Piazza Castello, designed around 1571 by the architect Andrea Palladio for Alessandro Porto. It is one of the two palaces designed by Palladio in Vicenza for the Porto family, the other being Palazzo Porto, for Iseppo Porto, in Contrà Porti, and is included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto.   SHORT HISTORY Alessandro Porto inherited the family properties in Piazza Castello after the death of his father, Benedetto Porto, which took place in 1571. The family assets were divided between the brothers Alessandro, Orazio and Pompeo. Francesco Thiene, owner of the Palladian palace of the same name at the other end of Piazza Castello, married Isabella Porto, Alessandro’s sister, and a competition began between the two families for having the most imposing palace in the square. The palace was designed with seven bays and a courtyard with an exedra, as shown by an analysis of the surviving walls, but the works were stopped near the end of the 16th century and never resumed. The reasons remain unknown. Between October 2009 and the first Read more [...]

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    Corso Andrea Palladio

    Corso Andrea Palladio is the main street of Vicenza, named in 1945 after the famous Renaissance architect. About 700 meters in lenght, it crosses the historical center of the city from west to east, respectively from Porta Castello to Piazza Giacomo Matteotti.   SHORT HISTORY The current street corresponds substantially to what, in Roman times, was the decumanus maximus (the main road in a Roman city, oriented from west to east). Also called strata major, after the construction of the early medieval walls of the city, it was bordered to the west by the Porta Feliciana and to the east by the Porta San Pietro. During the Middle Ages, but also in modern times, Corso Palladio retained the function of linking the neighbouring cities of Veneto, respectively Verona and Padua. Near its edges, there were inns, taverns and, later, parking lots. In 1847, the historian Cesare Cantù called it the most elegant street in Europe, if you do not count the Grand Canal of the incomparable Venice. In 1866, after the annexation of Veneto to the Kingdom of Italy, the street was officially called Corso Principe Umberto. In 1943, the name was changed to Corso Ettore Muti and finally, after Read more [...]

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    Piazza dei Signori

    Piazza dei Signori is the main square of Vicenza, located in the historical center of the city. Originally a Roman forum and then a market, the square is best known today for the Basilica Palladiana, the grandiose work of Andrea Palladio. The square has a rectangular shape and is delimited to the southwest by the Palladian Basilica and the Bissara Tower, while on the opposite side we can find the Loggia del Capitaniato and the Palazzo del Monte di Pietà, which incorporates the beautiful Church of San Vincenzo.   SHORT HISTORY AND ARCHITECTURE In antiquity, the area of Piazza dei Signori was the site of the Roman forum of Vicetia. Later, during the Middle Ages, the area was called Perònio, and was the center of the political, commercial and social life of the city. The oldest building in the square is the Bissara Tower (Torre Bissara), built in 1174 at the behest of the Bissara family, next to their palace. In the 13th century, the municipality of Vicenza bought both the palace and the tower. After escaping the terrible earthquake of January 25, 1348, the tower was raised around the middle of the 15th century, reaching its current height. Near Read more [...]

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    Church of San Vincenzo

    The Church of San Vincenzo is a beautiful church in Vicenza, located in Piazza dei Signori, in front of the Palladian Basilica, dedicated to Saint Vincent of Saragossa, the patron saint of the city.   SHORT HISTORY After the Christian martyr Vincent of Saragossa was killed in 304 during the persecution of Christians under Diocletian, his cult spread rapidly throughout Europe, reaching Vicenza in the first centuries of the first millennium of our Era. In the second half of the 14th century, during the Scaligeri domination of the city, the cult of San Vincenzo was revived. The construction of a church dedicated to him was begun in 1385 and completed in 1387. During the 15th century, the church was rebuilt and its facade was oriented towards Piazza dei Signori. In 1486, a Monte di Pietà office was created in Vicenza by the Catholic Church, which established a pawnshop in the Church of San Vincenzo. Ten years later, the Monte di Pietà building collapsed and, in 1499, work began on a new building adjacent to the church, with the simultaneous renovation of the church itself. During the 16th century, the works were completed with the construction of the two wings of Read more [...]

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    Church of Santa Maria in Foro

    The Church of Santa Maria in Foro is a church in Vicenza, located in Piazza Biade, a small square adjacent to Piazza dei Signori. The church is also called dei Servi, due to the fact that it was built by the Order of Friar Servants of Mary.   SHORT HISTORY The church was built starting with 1404, the year in which Vicenza passed under the domination of the Republic of Venice. At the beginning of the 15th century, the Servite Order arrived in Vicenza and entrusted the construction of the church to the architect Giampietro Cirmisone, who completed the works in 1425. Some decorations were added between 1432 and 1435. The Servants of Mary lived in the adjacent convent until 1788, when the order was suppressed. Afterwards, the Municipality of Vicenza took care of the church until 1797, when the building became a military warehouse for the troops of Napoleon Bonaparte. In 1810, the parish of the Church of San Michele was transferred here, and the Church of Santa Maria in Foro was again open for worship.   ARCHITECTURE The plain facade of the church is embellished by nine statues, two of which are attributed to the sculptor Orazio Marinali, Read more [...]

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    Loggia del Capitaniato

    Loggia del Capitaniato, also known as the Palazzo del Capitaniato or Loggia Bernarda, is a palace in Vicenza, located in the central Piazza dei Signori, in front of the Basilica Palladiana. The palace, designed in 1565 by the architect Andrea Palladio, is currently the seat of the city council. In 1994, it was included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto.   SHORT HISTORY In 1565, the Municipality of Vicenza asked Andrea Palladio to build a palace for the Captain, the military head in charge of the city on behalf of the Republic of Venice. The palace was to replace a pre-existing medieval building, already used as the residence of the Captain. Because the construction of the Palladian Basilica was still in progress, Palladio found himself engaged on two fronts located in the same square. For the Palazzo del Capitaniato, he was able to exploit the architectural and stylistic knowledge acquired in the last 20 years of work in Vicenza. Like many other buildings of the Venetian architect, the palace remained partially unfinished. The works were stopped in 1572, with only three bays built, instead of the five or seven originally Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Chiericati

    Palazzo Chiericati is a Renaissance palace in Vicenza, located in Piazza Matteotti, next to the Corso Andrea Palladio, in the vicinity of Teatro Olimpico. Designed in 1550 by the architect Andrea Palladio, the palace houses the Civic Museum of Vicenza since 1855, and was included in 1994 in the UNESCO World Heritage Site City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto.   SHORT HISTORY The palace was commissioned by Count Girolamo Chiericati to Andrea Palladio in 1550, and the construction of the palace began in the following year. In 1557, the count died and the works were stopped. The son of Girolamo, Valerio, limited himself to decorate the interiors of the palace, involving some great artists of the time, like Bartolomeo Ridolfi, Giovanni Battista Zelotti, Giovanni Antonio Fasolo and Battista Franco. The palace remained unfinished for more than a century, and it was completed only in 1680, following the design of Palladio, who died in 1580. The Municipality of Vicenza purchased the building in 1839 from the Chiericati family, with the intention of collecting the most important art of the city. The palace was restored by the architects Berti and Giovanni Miglioranza, and the Civic Museum was inaugurated Read more [...]

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    Piazza dei Signori

    Piazza dei Signori, also known as Piazza Dante, is a beautiful square located in the historical center of Verona, adjacent to Piazza delle Erbe.   SHORT HISTORY The square was formed in the Middle Ages, and was gradually defined by the palaces that were built around it. The first building, erected near the end of the 12th century, was the Palazzo della Ragione, followed between the 13th and 14th centuries by the palaces built by the powerful family of Della Scala, Lords of Verona. From the beginning, the square assumed political and administrative functions, and became the most important place in the city during the Venetian domination. Around the middle of the 17th century, a fountain was built by Pietro Tedesco in the center of the square. However, by the turn of the century, it was decided that it was insufficient to decorate such a monumental square, and the fountain was demolished. In 1865, a new monument was built in the center of the square – the statue of the Italian poet Dante Aligheri, work of the sculptor Ugo Zannoni.   ARCHITECTURE In the southern corner of the square, we can find the Palazzo della Ragione, which was built at Read more [...]

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    Arco dei Gavi

    Arco dei Gavi is a monument in Verona, located just outside the walls of the ancient Roman city. The arch was built around the middle of the 1st century to celebrate the gens Gavia, an important Roman family of Verona.   SHORT HISTORY The arch was commissioned by the Gavia family to the architect Lucius Vitruvius Cerdo, and built in the last years of the reign of Augustus or in the first years of the reign of Tiberius, around the middle of the 1st century. Erected along the Via Postumia as an isolated monument, it was later stripped of the decorative elements and incorporated into the new municipal walls built in the 12th century. Around that time, the arch changed its function and was used as an urban gate, being called the Gate of San Zeno (Porta di San Zeno). During the Scaligeri domination, the arch became part of the defensive system of Castelvecchio, built in the second half of the 14th century. During the Venetian domination, which financed the construction of the Venetian walls, the structure lost its defensive function. In 1550, the Venetian Republic ceded the area around the building to private individuals. The new owner decided to Read more [...]

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    Church of San Fermo Maggiore

    The Church of San Fermo Maggiore is a church located in the historical center of Verona, dedicated to Saint Fermus, a Christian martyr under Emperor Maximian.   SHORT HISTORY According to tradition, Saints Fermus and Rusticus were martyred in Verona in 304 AD, and the locals built a church in their honor in the 5th or 6th century. However, the first traces of this church date back to the 8th century. In 755, the bishop of Verona, Annone, who is now venerated as a saint, received the relics of Saints Fermus and Rusticus and placed them under the altar of the church dedicated to them. Between 1065 and 1143, the Benedictines completely restructured the complex and built two churches in Romanesque style: the lower one to preserve the relics, and the upper one for the daily celebrations. They also started the construction of the bell tower, which was completed only in the 13th century. In 1261, the Franciscans took the place of the Benedictines and rebuilt the upper church. The work was completed around 1350. In the following centuries, inside the church were added chapels, altars and funeral monuments. In 1759, the relics were placed in the altar of the Read more [...]

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    Ponte della Vittoria

    Ponte della Vittoria (Bridge of Victory) is a bridge in Verona, built across the Adige river. The bridge owes its name to the victory of Vittorio Veneto, a battle that led to the defeat of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the First World War.   SHORT HISTORY In 1925, the Municipality of Verona announced a national competition for the construction of a monumental bridge to celebrate the Battle of Vittorio Veneto and the memory of the Veronese victims. The competition, attended by numerous designers, was won by the architect Ettore Fagiuoli and the engineer Ferruccio Cipriani. The construction began on November 4, 1928, and was completed in 1931. The inauguration took place on November 4, 1929. The construction site of the bridge saw the destruction of some surrounding buildings. On the night of April 25, 1945, the bridge was destroyed by the retreating Germans, along with all the other bridges in Verona, including the Ponte di Castelvecchio. Only the right arch remained intact, which was used by the Allies as a support for the construction of an iron bridge, indispensable for continuing the pursuit of the German troops. In 1947, Ettore Fagiuoli redesigned the bridge, and on August 29, 1953, Ponte Read more [...]

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    Ponte di Castelvecchio

    Ponte di Castelvecchio, also known as Ponte Scaligero, is a medieval bridge in Verona, across the Adige river, part of the fortress of Castelvecchio.   SHORT HISTORY The bridge was built between 1354 and 1356 under the lordship of Cangrande II della Scala, to ensure the fortress of Castelvecchio with an escape route to the Tyrol, in case there had been a riot by one of the enemy factions within the city. The structure of the bridge remained untouched for about five centuries, until 1802, when the French, following the Treaty of Lunéville, demolished the tower on the southern side and eliminated the battlements. In 1820, the battlements were reconstructed by the Austrians on the orders of Emperor Francis I of Austria. The bridge was destroyed on April 24, 1945, by the retreating Germans, along with all the other bridges in Verona. In the post-war period, it was decided to rebuild it together with other important monuments of the city lost during the Second World War. For the reconstruction project, the architect Piero Gazzola collaborated with the engineer Alberto Minghetti for the technical part and the architect Libero Cecchini for the artistic part. The work began at the end of Read more [...]

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    Torre dei Lamberti

    Torre dei Lamberti is a medieval tower in Verona, 84 meters high, located in Piazza delle Erbe, in the historical center of the city.   SHORT HISTORY The tower was built by the powerful Lamberti family starting with the 11th century. The lower part of the tower, from terracotta and tuff blocks, dates back to that period. In 1140, the structure became a civic tower and the first bell, Rengo, was installed. The bell sounded to summon the Arengo (City Council) and for calling the army in an emergency. In 1272, a second bell, called Marangona, was added. The Marangona sounded a warning in the event of fire and it marked the hours of the day, thereby regulating the city life. In 1311, the third bell was installed, called Consolata. In May 1403, the lightning struck the top of the tower, and the restoration work began only in 1448, and lasted until 1464. In the same period, the tower was elevated to 84 meters. In 1779, there was the proposal to place a large clock on the tower, but the watchmaker who was comissioned to make the clock died before starting the work. Only in 1798, the count Giovanni Sagramoso Read more [...]

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    Basilica of Santa Anastasia

    Basilica of Santa Anastasia is an important Catholic church in Verona, located in the northern area of the historical center of the city, in Piazza Santa Anastasia. Although the church is named after the Dominican Saint Peter Martyr, it is better known as Santa Anastasia due to an ancient Arian cult building which stood on this place, dedicated to Anastasia of Sirmium.   SHORT HISTORY The origins of the Church of Santa Anastasia are very ancient. It is believed that already in the Longobard era, where the current building stands, there were two Christian churches that, according to tradition, were built at the behest of the Ostrogoth King Theodoric. One was dedicated to Saint Remigius of Reims and the other to Saint Anastasia, a Christian martyr under Diocletian, whose cult spread from Constantinople to Verona around the 8th century. The oldest information about this structure is contained in a diploma dated October 2, 890, issued by the King of Italy Berengario I. A second mention of the church is found in a document dated May 12, 1082. Subsequently, a decree of 1087 lists the numerous possessions of the church. The Dominican friars arrived in Verona around 1220, and settled outside Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Barbieri

    Palazzo Barbieri, also known as Palazzo della Gran Guardia Nuova, is a Neoclassical palace in Verona, located in Piazza Bra, near the famous Arena di Verona. Today, the palace is the city’s Town Hall.   SHORT HISTORY Palazzo Barbieri was designed by the architect Giuseppe Barbieri, who was also the author of the Monumental Cemetery of Verona. The construction of the palace began in 1836 and was completed in 1848. During the Austrian occupation, the building was used mainly for military purposes, as the headquarters of the Imperial Royal Command of the City. After the region of Veneto became part of the Kingdom of Italy, the palace was chosen as the seat of the Municipality of Verona. On the night of February 23, 1945, in one of the most destructive bombings of World War II, Palazzo Barbieri was hit and badly damaged. After the war, it was quickly rebuilt and enlarged, after a design by the architects Raffaele Benatti and Guido Troiani, and inaugurated in March 1950.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE The palace has an imposing facade, with a pronaos set on a central block, delimited by tall Corinthian semi-columns. After the damage suffered during the World War II, a Read more [...]

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    Piazza Bra

    Piazza Bra is the largest square in Verona, located in historical center of the city. The most important structure in the square is, without doubt, the famous Roman amphitheater known as the Arena di Verona. The Arena, located in the northern part of the square, was built in the 1st century AD. Still used today, the Arena is one of the best preserved ancient structures of its kind and the world’s eighth-largest Roman amphitheater.   SHORT HISTORY The area began to take the shape of a square only in the first half of the 16th century, when the architect Michele Sanmicheli completed the Honorij Palace (Palazzo degli Honorij), which delimited the western side of the future square. The first attempt to transform the dirt road into a square belonged to the mayor Alvise Mocenigo, who wanted to create a meeting place for the Veronese bourgeoisie. He inaugurated the first part of the Liston, the paved sidewalk that flanks the Bra Square, in 1770. On March 13, 1782, Francesco Menegatti presented a project for the definitive paving of the Liston and, after his intervention, the Bra became the favorite place for afternoon walks. Palazzo della Gran Guardia, began by the Venetians Read more [...]

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    Porta San Zeno

    Porta San Zeno is a monumental gate in Verona, located in Piazza Bacanal, about 270 meters from the Basilica of San Zeno Maggiore.   SHORT HISTORY The gate was designed by the Veronese architect Michele Sanmicheli in 1541, upon returning from his journey in the eastern Mediterranean. Two inscriptions on the front and back of the gate, both dated 1542, suggest that its construction was extremely short, ending in less than a year. The gate was one of the two main entry points to the city, along with Porta San Giorgio, for the visitors who came from the Brenner Pass, a mountain pass through the Alps which forms the border between Italy and Austria.   ARCHITECTURE The gate is inserted in the wall delimited on the north by the Bastion of San Procolo and on the south by the Bastion of San Zeno, and is located near the latter. The plan of the gate is square, with a large central vaulted entrance and a pavilion roof. A side walkway and the guardroom are located laterally, while other rooms can be found on the second floor. In the past, the gate was equipped with wooden drawbridges, which were lowered onto the Read more [...]

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    Piazza Paolo VI

    Piazza Paolo VI, also known as Piazza del Duomo, is one of the main squares of Brescia, located about 100 meters from Piazza della Loggia and about the same from Piazza della Vittoria. Part of the historical center of Brescia, it is known as Piazza del Duomo due to the presence of the two cathedrals of the city, and it was named after Pope Paul VI after his death.   ARCHITECTURE The square appeared in medieval times, through the construction of the buildings that surround it. One of the buildings of that era is Palazzo Broletto, which today also includes the Civic Tower (Torre del Pegol) and the Loggia delle Grida, located on the northeast side of the square, dating back to the 13th century. Palazzo Broletto is considered the oldest public building in Brescia, and today it houses the Prefecture, the Provincial Administration and some municipal offices. On the eastern part of the square, we can also find the New Cathedral of Brescia, built between 1604 and 1825, in various architectural styles ranging from the late Baroque to the Rococo. The next structure is the Old Cathedral of the city, known also as La Rotonda, an example of Romanesque Read more [...]

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    Church of San Lorenzo

    Rich in pictorial and sculptural works of art, the Church of San Lorenzo, dedicated to Saint Lawrence, is one of the most important churches in Brescia.   SHORT HISTORY The first mention of the church can be found in a document dating back to the 11th century, but the place of worship was probably built long before this time. The first important interventions on the ancient structure took place at the end of the 15th century, at the behest of the provost Bernardino Fabio. At the beginning of the 16th century, Girolamo Romani, better known as Romanino, was commissioned to paint the Lamentation over the Dead Christ for the Chapel of the Passion. The painting remained in the chapel until 1871, and then was sold and transferred to various private collections in Italy and England. Today, the work is found in Venice, in the Gallerie dell’Accademia. From this moment on, many other artists worked in the church, including Callisto Piazza, Lattanzio Gambara, Pietro Marone and Prospero Rabaglio. In the 17th century, with the spread of the cult of Saint Carlo Borromeo, the church was enriched with an altar dedicated to him, decorated with an altarpiece by Francesco Giugno. The other Read more [...]

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    Monument to Bella Italia

    The Monument to Bella Italia, officially a monument dedicated to the fallen of the Ten Days of Brescia, is a sculpture located in the northeast area of Piazza della Loggia, in Brescia. The sculpture is the work of Giovanni Battista Lombardi from 1864 and was donated to the city by King Vittorio Emanuele II.   SHORT HISTORY On the site where the monument stands today, there was originally a column with the Lion of Saint Mark on top, a sign of the domination of the Republic of Venice over the city of Brescia. The column was erected between 1454 and 1455, and near its base there were held, for centuries, the executions of those condemned to death, in front of a large public. Finally demolished in 1797 by the revolutionaries, it left an empty space which was filled a few decades later, in 1864, by the new monument. The statue was conceived in the full Italian Unification climate to commemorate the fallen of the Ten Days of Brescia and was executed by the sculptor Giovanni Battista Lombardi at the behest of Vittorio Emanuele II. The inauguration took place in 1864, and the sculpture still occupies the northeastern portion of the Read more [...]

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    Church of San Francesco d’Assisi

    The Church of San Francesco d’Assisi is a church in Brescia, dedicated to Saint Francis of Assisi. The church is flanked by an ancient Franciscan convent dating back to the 14th century.   SHORT HISTORY The church was completed in 1265, but it was not frescoed until the early 14th century. In the 15th century, the church was enriched with 5 altars, two of which painted by Moretto (Alessandro Bonvicino) and Romanino (Girolamo Romani), great masters of the early Renaissance in Brescia. In the 16th century, in the left nave of the church, the Chapel of the Immaculate was built in Renaissance style. With the advent of the French in 1797, the church and the adjoining convent underwent a phase of decadence in which archives were destroyed and many rooms were ruined. Only in 1839, thanks to the architect Rodolfo Vantini, the church was the subject of modernization work, taking on some Neoclassical elements. In 1928, the Friars Minor returned to live in both the convent and the church, and thanks to various restorations, they were able to recover a part of the ancient artistic heritage.   ART AND ARCHITECTURE The facade of the church, in Romanesque-Gothic style, restored in Read more [...]

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    Palazzo Martinengo Palatini

    Palazzo Martinengo Palatini is a beautiful palace in Brescia, located in Piazza del Mercato. Built in the 15th century and completely rebuilt at the beginning of the 18th century, is one of the most elegant Baroque palaces of the city.   SHORT HISTORY In 1457, Giovanni Martinengo bought a piece of land in the area where the ancient medieval walls were located. With other successive purchases, the family became the owner of the entire space between Piazza delle Erbe, now Piazza del Mercato, Corso Palestro and Via Fratelli Porcellaga. In 1479, the sons of Giovanni were appointed palatine counts by the Emperor Maximilian of Austria, which generated the new family branch of the Martinengo Palatini. One of their descendants, Teofilo, decided to demolish the 15th-century palace and to build a new one. Teofilo began the construction, but never see it finished, dying in the early 18th century. The palace was finally completed by his son, Curzio III, in 1710. With the extinction of the family branch in 1874, the building was donated to the Municipality of Brescia, which set up some offices in the palace, as well as the Musical Institute Venturi, which used the main hall as an auditorium Read more [...]

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    Piazza del Mercato

    Piazza del Mercato is a beautiful square in Brescia, located southwest of Piazza della Vittoria and Piazza della Loggia, along Corso Palestro.   SHORT HISTORY In 1435, on the southern part of the square, sellers of cloths and linen appeared, placing their wooden huts there. In 1481, the Municipality of Brescia built a long arcade with residences for the shopkeepers on the first floor. In 1558, a similar structure was built on the northern part of the square, where Lodovico Beretta erected a palace with the same function, known today as Palazzo Beretta. During the 17th century, the last two monumental buildings in the square were built: the Church of the Madonna del Lino, in the southern part, in 1608, and the Martinengo Palatini Palace in the western part, began in 1672, but completed only in 1710. At the beginning of the 19th century, other interventions were made to the square: the wooden huts leaning against the buildings were eliminated, the arcades were paved and, in the center, a large fountain was built after a design by Giovanni Donegani with the statue of Abundance by Giovanni Antonio Labus. The bombardments of the Second World War seriously damaged the square and Read more [...]

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    Brescia Old Cathedral

    The Old Cathedral (Duomo Vecchio), also known as La Rotonda because of its round layout and officially as the Winter Co-Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, is a Romanesque church in Brescia. The Old Cathedral is located near the New Cathedral (Duomo Nuovo), in Piazza Paolo VI.   SHORT HISTORY The history of the Old Cathedral begins with the demolition of the ancient Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore de Dom, an early Christian structure built perhaps in the 7th century. The construction of the cathedral began in the 11th century and was completed in the first half of the 12th century. Towards the end of the 13th century, Berardo Maggi, bishop of Brescia, made an enlargement of the presbytery and had the interiors decorated. Between the end of the 15th century and the beginning of the 16th century, the architect Bernardino da Martinengo extended the presbytery to the east, covering it with cross vaults in Gothic style. Around the same time, the transept was also added, completed with the Chapel of the Holy Crosses on the left side. In this phase of construction, Filippo Grassi, the future architect of the Palazzo della Loggia, also participated. The keystones are the work of Read more [...]

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    Piazza della Vittoria

    Piazza della Vittoria is a beautiful square in Brescia, located about 100 meters away from the Piazza della Loggia and the Palazzo della Loggia.   SHORT HISTORY In 1927, the Municipality of Brescia, supported by the Fascist politician Augusto Turati, by the Fascist Party and by Benito Mussolini himself, held a competition for a new urban redesign of the ancient medieval area of the Pescherie district. The winner was the Roman architect Marcello Piacentini. The demolition of the area began in 1929 and was completed in less than two years. During the works, buildings of great historical value were lost, such as the 15th-century slaughterhouse and the Romanesque Church of Sant’Ambrogio, rebuilt in the 18th century. In 1932, during the ceremony of inauguration of the square, which coincided with the tenth anniversary of the birth of fascism, Benito Mussolini himself was present and gave a speech. The construction of the large underground car park, which took place in 1974, forced large ventilation grids to be opened over a large part of the central area of the square. The general renovation of the square, connected to the creation of the Metro station, was completed at the end of 2013. The area Read more [...]

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    Torre dell’Orologio

    Torre dell’Orologio is a beautiful clock tower in Brescia, located in Piazza della Loggia, opposite the Palazzo della Loggia.   SHORT HISTORY The Clock Tower was built between 1540 and 1550 on a design by Lodovico Beretta, a local architect who also contributed to the construction of the Palazzo della Loggia. The tower houses a complex mechanical clock, installed between 1544 and 1546, probably replacing a previous mechanism. The clock, on two different dials, marks the hours, the moon phases and the zodiac signs.   ARCHITECTURE The side of the tower facing Piazza della Loggia has an astronomical quadrant and a tympanum painted by Gian Giacomo Lamberti in 1547, while the second side, which overlooks Via Beccaria, has a gilded quadrant of an unknown author. On the upper part of the tower, there are two rods and a bronze bell, and two copper automata installed in 1581, depicting two men with a hammer, known in the Brescian dialect as the Màcc de le ure (Crazy of the hours). In 1595, a long portico in white Botticino marble was built by the architect Piero Maria Bagnadore at the base of the tower. Passing under the tower through a passage created in Read more [...]

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    Piazza della Loggia

    Piazza della Loggia is a rectangular square in Brescia, enclosed by a series of buildings from the Venetian period, among which stands the Palazzo della Loggia, the seat of the city’s Municipal Council.   SHORT HISTORY Piazza della Loggia was designed during the Renaissance, and its construction began at the end of the 15th century. The square became the beating heart of the city, both for its position and for the presence of the Loggia, a palace built between 1489 and 1574. On May 28, 1974, a bombing took place in the square during an anti-fascist demonstration, killing 8 people and wounding 102.   ARCHITECTURE The square is surrounded by 16th-century buildings in Venetian style, quite modest in appearance, but with a strong visual impact. Opposite to the Loggia, on the eastern side of the square, we can find the arcades, also in Renaissance style, surmounted by the Clock Tower, named for the presence of an ancient clock added in 1546. On the southern side of the square, there is the old Monte di Pietà building, erected between 1484 and 1489, which has a small Venetian loggia divided into two arches in the lower part, and the main facade adorned Read more [...]