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Palazzo Pubblico

Palazzo Pubblico Review

The Gothic Palazzo Pubblico, the focal point of the Piazza del Campo, has served as Siena's town hall since the 1300s. It now also contains the Museo Civico, with walls covered in early Renaissance frescoes. The nine governors of Siena once met in the Sala della Pace, famous for Ambrogio Lorenzetti's frescoes called Allegories of Good and Bad Government, painted in the late 1330s to demonstrate the dangers of tyranny. The good government side depicts utopia, showing first the virtuous ruling council surrounded by angels and then scenes of a perfectly running city and countryside. Conversely, the bad government fresco tells a tale straight out of Dante. The evil ruler and his advisers have horns and fondle strange animals, and the town scene depicts the seven mortal sins in action. Interestingly, the bad government fresco is severely damaged, and the good government fresco is in terrific condition. The Torre del Mangia, the palazzo's famous bell tower, is named after one of its first bell ringers, Giovanni di Duccio (called Mangiaguadagni, or earnings eater). The climb up to the top is long and steep, but the view makes it worth every step.

    Contact Information

  • Address: Piazza del Campo 1, Città, Siena, 53100 | Map It
  • Phone: 0577/292232
  • Cost: Museum €8, Tower €8, combined ticket €13
  • Hours: Museum: Nov.–Mar. 15, daily 10–6; Mar. 16–Oct., daily 10–7. Tower: Nov.–Mar. 15, daily 10–4; Mar. 16–Oct., daily 10–7
  • Location: Siena
Updated: 12-04-2013

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