The Palazzo del Podesta in Viterbo is one of three buildings that make up the Palazzi Comunali. The others are the Palazzo dei Priori and the Palazzo del Capitano del Popolo.
Palazzo del Podestà Viterbo
History and description
Although the main façade of the Palazzo del Podesta is located in Piazza del Plebiscito, the entrance is in the Via Ascenzi.
It was built in 1264, at the same time as the Palazzo del Capitano del Popolo. There is but little left of the original construction however, since in later years it was often restored and renovated. The facade still shows the outline of an old window.
The balcony looking out over the square side is an 18th century addition.
The Torre dell’Orologio (which used to be called Torre dei Monaldeschi) towers above the palace. It was reconstructed, without its original battlements, in 1487, after an earlier version had fallen into disrepair. The slightly leaning tower is about 44 meters tall and is adorned with a ceramic quadrant and multiple coats of arms. The wrought-iron bell dates back to 1452.
From the Palazzo del Podesta, you can walk straight to the Palazzo dei Priori through the Pinacotheque.
On the first floor, there are two large ceramic panels made by the masters of Deruta, depicting the long conclave that led to th election of Pope Gregory X, with the Palazzo Papale without roof. The second panel shows the five popes that were elected in Viterbo.
Below the tower is a statue of a lion and a palm tree, the symbols of Viterbo, with the coats of arms of Cardinal d’Este and Bishop Ardinghelli above them.