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.
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 free the monument by demolishing the medieval walls around it.
In 1805, during the Napoleonic occupation, the French architects dismantled the monument for reasons of military security. In 1931, the arch was rebuilt near the fortress of Castelvecchio by the historian Antonio Avena and the archaeologist Carlo Anti, with the help of the architect Ettore Fagiuoli. The monument was inaugurated on October 28, 1932.
The arch has a height of 12.69 meters, a length of 10.96 meters of the longer sides and 6.02 meters of the shorter ones. The monument, characterized by great constructive simplicity, is a tetrapylon (monument of cubic shape, with a gate on each of the four sides).
The main facades of the arch are divided into three zones by four Corinthian columns. The two central columns of each facade are connected by an entablature and a pediment above, and frame on both sides the main arch, which is characterized by a three-band archivolt resting on two Corinthian pillars.
The interior of the arch has a flat coffered ceiling. The ceiling is adorned in the center with an ornament with the face of Gorgon surrounded by four rosettes, all enclosed by a row of small shelves.
HOW TO GET THERE
Arco dei Gavi is located about 1.5 kilometers from the Verona Porta Nuova railway station. The closest bus stop is right in front of the monument, in Piazza Pasque Veronesi, on the bus Lines 21, 22, 23, 24, 41 and 173.