Palazzo Bertini Ragusa

The Palazzo Bertini is one of the most interesting buildings flanking the main street of the new town of Ragusa, the Corso Italia. The main attraction of this Baroque building is formed by the decorations of the keystones of the arches. Palazzo Bertini is on the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Palazzo Bertini Ragusa

Useful information

Address: Corso Italia, 22 – 97100 Ragusa. Phone: +39 0932 676635. The building can only be viewed from outside.

History and description

Palazzo Bertini Ragusa, beggar depicted on facade.
The beggar.

The Palazzo Bertini was constructed towards the end of the 18th century. Its construction was commissioned by Don Salvatore Floridia. 

Toward the middle of the 19th century, the Bertini family acquired the building.

In 1847, when the course of the Corso Italia was altered, and the street was also lowered, the facade of the palazzo underwent various changes.

What are now the balconies of the mezzanine floor, used to be the entrances to the rooms on the ground floor. The present ground floor rooms did not exist yet.

The entrance leads to an atrium, from which a staircase leads to the rooms themselves, which are decorated with stucco and paintings.

What to see

The keystones of the arches of the first floor entrances are decorated with the heads of what are considered three typical Baroque characters. The toothless beggar is depicted dressed in rags. The aristocrat wears a feathered hat and an arrogant seeming face. The “man from the east” wears a turban and a large pearl earring, showing his wealth. One interpretation claims that all three represent different kinds of power. The oriental has money, the aristocrat has political power and the beggar can do what he wants to, because nothing can be taken from him anyway.

Like similar buildings in Ragusa, the balconies are graced with richly decorated wrought iron frames.

Palazzo Bertini Ragusa


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