Equestrian Statue Vittorio Emanuele II Milan
History and description
The equestrian statue of Vittorio Emanuele II has been in the middle of Milan’s Duomo Square only since 1896. However, the sculptor, Ercole Rosa, had already received the commission to create the statue from Umberto I, the king’s son and heir to the throne, around 1870.
Ercole Rosa himself never saw his creation in the square, as he died in 1893. The Barzaghi brothers completed the statue under the direction of Ettore Ferrari.
The equestrian statue stands on a large marble pedestal. The reliefs on this pedestal depict the entry of the Franco-Piedmontese troops into Milan in June 1859.
The king is depicted pulling on the reins. As a result, the horse has all four legs touching the ground, making the sculpture more stable. The huge lions on either side of the pedestal are depicted with plaques on which the words “Milan” and “Rome” are written.
The statue is aligned with the entrance to the Cathedral.