"Palazzo della Mercanzia, Exterior" Palazzo della Mercanzia Tip by von.otter
Palazzo della Mercanzia, Bologna: 7 reviews and 28 photos
“Bologna is a walled city of Seventy Thousand inhabitants, with about as much trade and business of all kinds as an American village of ten to twenty thousand people.”
— from “Glances at Europe: in a Series of Letters from Great Britain, France, Italy” 1851 by Horace Greeley (1811-1872)
An elegant, Gothic brick building stands on the south side of Piazza di Porta Ravegnana; it is Palazzo della Mercanzia, the Merchant’s Building. Built between 1384 and 1391, at the site of the old customs house, the project was designed by architect Antonio di Vincenzo, also known for his designs of the Palace of the Notaries, the Palazzo Re Enzo and the Basilica of St. Petronio. An extension was added in 1439 and restored in 1484. Between 1888 an 1890 another renovation was carried out, introducing polychrome details. It was rebuilt in 1949 after a bomb exploded nearby and half the façade collapsed.
Using brick and Istrian stone, the façade has two deep Gothic arches, highlighted by the raised porch. Above the arches are two Gothic arched windows and a small marble balcony (see photo #2) that projects out. From the balcony the judges of the merchants’ court would read their sentences. Local tradition says that when the city's bell known as Lucardina rang out decisions of the Merchant’s Court were read out loud from this balcony.
Address: Piazza della Mercanzia, 4
Phone: 051 6093111
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