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Piazza della Signoria

Photo credit: eblaser / Source / CC BY
Piazza della Signoria
  • (worth a trip)
  • half day
  • 3 3

One of Florence's piazzas, often referred to as the political hub

Piazza della Signoria, Firenze, Italy

Piazza della Signoria is a square in Florence located right in front of the Florence’s town hall and the Palace of the Assicurazioni Generali. The piazza acts as a favourite meeting point for the residents of Florence and it is known as the political place of the city.

 

The most important points of interest in Piazza della Signoria are:

Palazzo Vecchio (Old Palace) – a Romansque-style building which acts as Florence’s town hall. At the entrance of the palace stands a copy of the famous Michelangelo’s David statue. In fact, the original one stood here up until the year 1873 before it was moved to the Accademia Gallery. Inside the palace are three impressive courtyards, the Salone de Cinquecento, which is an impressive chamber with frescoes depicting battles in Pisa and Siena on its walls, the Studiolo, a small windoless room full of bronze sculptures made by Italian artists, the mezzanine full of Renaissance and Medieval artifacts, and many other rooms that will spark your interest.

 

Neptune Fountain – Located in front of Palazzo Vecchio, is a fountain depicting Neptune, meant to signify the dominion of Florence over the oceans. Other mythical figures decorate the pedestal as well. It was the work of Bartolomeo Ammannati, an Italian sculptor in 1565.

 

Statue of I. Cosimo de’ Medici – A statue made in honour of Cosimo I de’ Medici, the second duke of Florence and the first Grand Duke of Tuscany.

 

Palazzo Uguccioni – A Renaissance palace built during the 14th century with three arcades and impressive columns. It is unclear who designed it but the work has been attributed to famous figures such as Michelangelo, Raphael and others, although no proof remains of whose work it was exactly. Interestingly, it is the only building in Florence whose facades are decorated by columns.

 

Logia dei Lanzi – A building located in the corner of the plaza with wide arches on its facades, trefoils with the four cardinal virtues (fortitude, temperance, justice and prudence), the Meidici lions on its steps, two marble statues of lions known as Marzoccos which are a typical symbol of Florence, Latin inscriptions that commemorate the change of the Florentine calendar into the Roman one and many other impressive works of art and architecture.

 

Ufizzi Gallery – One of the oldest museums in Europe. Its construction began in the year 1560 and finished until 1681. Originally, it was meant to be the offices of magistrates, but as time passed, it became a place where artworks collected by the House of Medici, especially after the house was vanished and the last Medici heiress and it was converted into a museum in the 16th century. Ufizzi has undergone many distasters including a car bomb and several floods which have devastated the artworks. However, it still remains one of Florence’s most visited attractions. The gallery has several collections which contain artworks by Leonardo Da Vinci, Rembrandt, Raphael, Michelangelo, Abrogio Lorenzetti, Paolo Uccelo, Andrea del Verrocchio, Sandro Boticcelli, Caravaggio, Artemisa Gentileschi and more.

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