Palazzo della Mercanzia, Bologna

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  • Palazzo della Mercanzia
    Palazzo della Mercanzia
    by croisbeauty
  • Piazza della Mercanzia
    Piazza della Mercanzia
    by croisbeauty
  • the marble canopy
    the marble canopy
    by croisbeauty
  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo

    Palazzo della Mercanzia

    by croisbeauty Updated Feb 18, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Palazzo della Mercanzia
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    In Piazza della Mercanzia you can admire the beauty of the palace and some examples of typical Bolognese medieval houses. The ancient complex is combination of two houses and the tower, and both houses once were used as offices of the nearby Gabella for paying taxes.
    Palazzo della Mercanzia, known also as Loggia dei mercanti or Palazzo del Carrobbio, was built in 1382 under the design of Antonio di Vicenzo. This palace has governed trading and business activities of Bologna since the late 14th century. It was started in 1382 as Carrobbio open gallery and completed in 1391, but this elegant oalace needed an extention in 1439 and restoration in 1484, following the fall of the De' Bianchi tower. Originally the Palace, residence of an Arts Association, was used as a Merchant's Forum to discuss disputes between purchasers and customers. From its small marble balcony the judges of the Merchant's Court would read their sentences. According to the local tradition, at the stroke of the bell called "Lucardina", bans and sentences of the court were read out-loud from the arble canopy.
    The facade features a marble balcony with a great canopy made by brothers Dalle Masegne; a combination of a group of sculptures, depicting Justice St. Peter and St. Petronius, and the beautiful coat of arms belonging to the Arts' Association, make the balcony one of the nicest throughout Bologna's monuments.

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    Palazzo della Mercanzia, Interior

    by von.otter Updated Apr 4, 2011
    Palazzo della Mercanzia, Interior, Bologna, 5/2010
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    ”The most notable thing I saw in Bologna was an awning of sheeting or calico spread over the centre of the main street on a level with the roofs of the houses for a distance of half a mile or so. I should distrust its standing a strong gust, but if it would, the idea is worth borrowing.”
    — from “Glances at Europe: in a Series of Letters from Great Britain, France, Italy” 1851 by Horace Greeley (1811-1872)

    Palazzo della Mercanzia housed the Court of the Merchants, as well as the offices of the Merchants Guild, in addition to the Merchants Forum. Here, disputes between merchants were settled by a judge, assisted by five merchants called consuls. Noteworthy are the lobby and the beautifully paneled Council Hall.

    The seat of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Agriculture and Crafts, Palazzo della Mercanzia has governed trading and business activities of Bologna since the late 14th century. For the gallery and the preparation of the hewn stone four stonecutters were called from Florence.

    Those found guilty of fraudulent bankruptcy were chained to a post placed before the central pillar of the portico to be pilloried. The rooms and ambulatories of the building, despite the changes brought about with the passing of time, have kept their Medieval beauty.

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    • Arts and Culture
    • Architecture

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    Palazzo della Mercanzia, Exterior

    by von.otter Updated Oct 20, 2010

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    Palazzo della Mercanzia, Exterior, Bologna, 5/2010
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    “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.

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    Palazzo della Mercanzia

    by MM212 Updated Jul 3, 2009

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    Palazzo della Mercanzia (Apr 09)
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    A stunning Gothic building, the Palazzo della Mercanzia dates from 1391. It was designed by Antonio di Vincenzo and Lorenzo Bagnomarino as the Chamber of Commerce. The former architect is also famous for numerous important works in Bologna, including Palazzo dei Notai and the interiors of Palazzi del Podestà and Re Enzo. Part of the red brick and Istrian stone façade was destroyed during WWII and was restored in 1949.

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    • Castles and Palaces
    • Architecture

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