Florence > Palazzo Vecchio

Palazzo Vecchio

The Palazzo della Signoria, said old from the middle of the sixteenth century, when doctors the left to relocate in Palazzo Pitti, was the residence of the highest city authorities, the political center of the city (today there have headquarters to the Council and the Municipal Council of Florence) and concrete symbol of strength and of the harmony of the institutions. Built starting from 1299, with all probability it architect was the great Arnolfo di Cambio. The original building, a mighty cube rustic ashlar, divided into three floors and softened by beautiful mullioned windows with two lights, is crowned by a projecting balcony on corbels, from which rises, powerful and beautiful, the tower; under the arches, between brackets are the nine coats (repeated) of the Commune of Florence, among which the most well known, with the red lily in a white field. Some of the corbels are provided with manholes (window slits) from which, in the case not infrequent of riots and revolts, were thrown on attackers stones, hot oil and molten lead. The tower, 94 meters high, genially located outside the axis, was finished in 1310. The palace was then repeatedly expanded, in 1343, in 1495 (by Cronaca) and in the sixteenth century, by Vasari (that the risistemò widely within), by Giovanni Battista and rate by Buontalenti. The inside of the palace is rich of reasons of interest, for the salt and the works of art contained. On the ground floor-, the beautiful michelozziano courtyard and the Hall of Arms (entrance on the left-hand side; open only on the occasion of temporary exhibitions) austere and plain, interesting as it is the only fourteenth-century environment that has remained unchanged. On the first floor: the grandiose Salone dei Cinquecento, with the adjacent the Studiolo of Francesco I; the Sala dei Dugento, brothers da Maiano (1472-77), with beautiful coffered wooden ceiling (formerly the seat of the Council of the two hundred citizens who deliberavano on wars and alliances, the room is today the seat of the Municipal Council); The District of Leo X, with a chapel and beautiful rooms frescoed with stories of the Medici family, of Vasari and (you can visit only the salt of Leo X, of Lorenzo the Magnificent and Cosimeli, because in the other are the offices of the Mayor and assessors). In the second floor: The District of elements of John the Baptist in the rate (1550 c.), once again with salt decorated by Vasari and some with beautiful inlaid lockers, and with very nice, panoramic loggia of Saturn; the Quarters of Eleonora of Toledo (wife of Cosimo I) which must be mentioned at least the room of Gualdrada, with another nice chest in ebony and hard stones, and the Chapel, entirely frescoed by Bronzino, of which there is also the beautiful blade on the altar [piety, 1553); the Cappella della Signoria, the beautiful Audience Hall, of which are considerable the cassettonato ceiling and marble portal (both of da Maiano) and where it is located, plus a beautiful wooden counter run on drawing The Vasari, the famous, dramatic bronze group of Donatello depicting Judith and Holofernes (1455 c.), the stupendous and sontuosissima Sala dei Gigli, with adiacenRondanini by Michelangelo; Venus and Mercury have to Jupiter the Anteros son of Paolo Veronese; Leda with the swan of Tintoretto; Portrait of Elisabetta di Valois, of the Coelho; Judith with the head of Holofernes and great Equestrian portrait of Giovanni Carlo Doria Rubens; beautiful portrait of an unknown by Hans Memling; Ecstasy of Saint Cecilia di Bernardo Cavallino; exquisite portrait of Felicita Sartori of Rosalba Carriera; Venetian landscapes attributed to Francesco Guardi and the circle of Canaletto; finally, the pathetic motherhood, by the German painter of the Nineteenth Century Friedrich von Amerling. Always in mezzaLoeser, important legacy of sculptures and paintings of Tuscan artists from the 14th to the 16th century; among the major works are, for sculpture: two groups in terracotta depicting soldiers and knights, Giovan Francesco Rustici (XVI century), a beautiful Madonna with Child, in painted wood, attributed to the school of Arnolfo di Cambio and a marble Angel of Tino di Camaino ; among the paintings: the passion of the Christ, curious works of Piero di Cosimo (late fifteenth century; "ingenuity abstract and distant", it was defined by the Vasari in life dedicated to him), a Madonna and Child by Pietro Lorenzetti (first half of the XIV century) and the remarkable portrait of Laura Battiferri (wife of sculptor Ammannati) of Agnolo Bronzino. Finally, it is recommended a visit to the tower, from which is a large, beautiful views of the city and its surroundings.