The most important historical buildings of Bologna are located in the immediate vicinity of the Piazza Maggiore. The most famous of these palaces are the Palazzo del Podestà, the Palazzi d’Accursio and the Palazzo Re Enzo.
Historic Buildings Bologna
Palazzo del Podestà
The Palazzo del Podestà is one of the first three buildings built in the early 13th century to house the city council and the various offices of the city. They are all located around the central square Piazza Maggiore, which had been specially constructed for this motif. The Voltone del Podesta is known for its strange sound effect.
Palazzo Re Enzo
In the 13th century, the municipality had a number of houses and churches demolished in order to construct the current central Piazza Maggiore. This square was to become the administrative and commercial center of the city. The Palazzo Re Enzo was one of the palaces built for this purpose. The king after whom the palace is named was imprisoned here for 23 years. It also served as a warehouse for military implements.
The Palazzo Comunale consists of a number of buildings added over several centuries to a palace purchased by the city towards the end of the 13th century. One of those palaces was the home of the jurist Accursio. The halls of this building house, among others, a small municipal art museum. Its facade is characterized by a large clock and a papal statue above the main portal.
Palazzo Fava. Palazzo delle Esposizioni
The Palazzo Fava Ghisilieri (Via Manzoni, 2) is a medieval building that came into the hands of the powerful Fava family in the mid-16th century. Today it is used as an exhibition space, but its main attraction is still formed by some fresco cycles by the Caracci brothers. The current name is Palazzo Fava. Palazzo delle Esposizioni.
The Palazzo Bocchi (Via Goito, 16) is named after the local humanist Achille Bocchi. It was designed by Vignola in the 16th century. It is the only monumental building in Europe with a Hebrew inscription on the exterior wall.