Did you know that the most remarkable collection of Renaissance sculptures and works of art, some of which by Michelangelo and Donatello, is hosted in a wonderful building which once was a prison??
Built in 1865, the museum accommodates characteristic art works and masterpieces by Donatello, Della Robbia, Cellini, Giambologna, and Michelangelo. The objects, originating from the Medici collection and private donations, all placed in a hall on the ground floor and in some of the halls on the first floor, you can reach the first floor with a fabulous thirteenth-century staircase facing the courtyard.
The construction of the palace dates 1255 and was built to house first the “Capitano del Popolo” and then the “ Podestà”, the chief magistrate of Florence City Council.
During the Medici government, the Podestà was substituted by the “Bargello”, the police chief of the city who had to ensure peace and avoid riots and injustices, hence the actual name of the building.
The palace became the city prison and, until the 1786 when the death penalty was abolished, many executions took place in the building’s internal courtyard.
The actual Bargello function began in 1859, when the new Governor of Tuscanydecided to convert it from a jail into a Museum, which soon became one of the most important collection of Renaissance sculptures existing.
The Museum hosts furthermore, marvelous and unique collections of bronzes, medals, ivories, majolica and textiles from the Medici collections and manyjazz and music events are organized in this fascinating location.
Want to visit? Book a trip with Fantastica Italia!