The civic museum in the town hall of San Gimignano

If you visit Tuscany, an important destination is surely in the province of Siena, precisely in San Gimignano.

Here there is the Town Hall (also called the People’s Palace or Podestà’s Palace), and is located in Piazza del Duomo between the loggia of the City and the Torre Grossa.

Inside there is the Civic Museum which contains works of art of Florence and Siena ranging from the thirteenth to the sixteenth century, these have big importance, and were created by artists such as:

  • Lippo Memmi
  • Benozzo Gozzoli
  • Azzo di Masetto
  • Coppo of Marcovaldo
  • Sodoma
  • Pinturicchio and Filippino Lippi.

History and architecture of Civic Museum.

palazzo-del-comune-e-collegiataThis structure was born as seat of government of San Gimignano, and was built in 1288. The Town Hall was then expanded in 1323 and later became the seat of the municipality.

The structure has a facade with lowered arched windows, the bottom is made of hewn stone, and the top is made of brick.

On the first floor of the building we find a balcony resting on ancient shelves, these once served as a support of a gallery called “arengo”, from that point the podestà spoke to the crowd.

Some elements were added when there was the restoration between 1878 and 1881 made by Giuseppe Partini.

The Civic Museum

On the upper floors of the Town Hall, since 1852 we find the Civic Museum of San Gimignano, this has two entrances: from Piazza del Duomo and from the courtyard behind the palace.

In 1323 the yard was built and decorated with coats of arms that were either painted that sculpted. At the center of the courtyard there is a cistern that was placed there in 1361.

Some frescoes have a higher importance.

San’Ivo that does justice made by Sodoma in 1507.

Then another showing the Madonna with two saints painted by a not identified painter from Siena, but the period should date back to the fourteenth century.

Finally Justice that tramples on the lie by Vincenzo Tamagni sixteenth century.

In the museum it’s possible to visit different rooms which contain various and beautiful works. The Dante Hall, the Hall of Secret Meetings, the Art Gallery and the Room of Podestà.


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