Verona has a number of ancient city gates, the most important and famous of which date back to the late Middle Ages and Renaissance periods. The architect Michele Sanmichele was, as usual, the designer of some of these gates.
City gates Verona
The Porta Borsari is the oldest city gate in Verona. The gate was originally built by the Romans and dedicated to the God Giove (Jupiter). In those days, the gate had two facades, with a courtyard in-between. Of these, only the outer one remains.
Porta dei Leoni
The Porta dei Leoni is located in the street of the same name, near the Roman Cardo Maximus. The gate has a small central courtyard and on the sides were two towers, the foundations of which can still be seen. Another tower was built later, against the original gate.
Porta del Palio
The Porta del Palio is one of the most famous gates of the city. It was designed by Sanmicheli and its construction was completed in 1561. The three arches that make up the gate are decorated with busts depicting war heroes.
Porta di San Zeno
The Porta di San Zeno, like the Porta Fura (see below), is located near the Porta del Palio. It was built in 1542 and Michele Sanmicheli also designed this gate. The gate was finished very quickly, in less than a year. It used to have a wooden drawbridge.
The Porta Fura is also known as the Porta delle Catene because of the watchtower in the middle of the river. In ancient times, a chain (catena) stretched from the tower to the river banks in order to halt ships that had not paid their toll. The name Fura is a corruption of the German führen.
Porta San Giorgio
The first version of the Porta San Giorgio was built between 1321 and 1324, by Cangrande I Della Scala. When Verona became part of the Venetian State it was rebuilt by Giovanni Maria Falconetto (1525-1526). It was not until 1840, during the Austrian rule, that it was completed.