The Torre del Mangia is the tower next to the Palazzo Pubblico that looks out over the Piazza del Campo in Siena. To get all the way to the top, it is necessary to climb several hundred steep and narrow steps. The reward is a magnificent view of the city.
Torre del Mangia Siena
Address, opening hours and admission
Address: Piazza del Campo, 1, 53100 Siena. Phone: +39 0577292342. Opening hours: From 16 October to 28 February from 10:00 to 16:00; from 1 March to 15 October from 10:00 to 18:00. The ticket office closes 45 minutes before closing time. Reservations are not possible. Admission: 10 Euro; families (2 adults + children over 11): 25 Euro; children under 11: Free.
History and Description Torre del Mangia
The Torre del Mangia stands to the left of the Palazzo Pubblico. The tower was built between 1325 and 1348. The architects were the brothers Muccio and Francesco di Rinaldo, who hailed from Perugia.
The tower has a height of 88 meters. With the lightning rod added, this becomes about 102 meters. The tower was meant to be about the same height as the bell tower of the cathedral. In this way there was a symbolic balance between the clergy and the public life of the then Republic of Siena.
It is made of the laterizio stone type commonly used in Italy. The upper part, where the bells are located, was (probably) designed by Lippo Memmi and manufactured by Agostino di Giovanni.
The first stones used in the construction of the tower had Jewish, Greek and Latin characters. It was thought that this would keep the tower from being struck by storms or lightning.
The name Torre del Mangia is due to the fact that in the Middle Ages it was guarded by a tower keeper and bell ringer who was known to be a spendthrift. The nickname of this Giovanni di Duccio was Mangiaguadagni, or “Wage eater.” When the man was replaced by a mechanic, this device inherited the nickname. (Its remains are preserved within the Cortile del Podestà.)
In 1666, after several unsuccessful attempts, they finally succeeded in hanging the large tower bell. It is dedicated to the Madonna Assunta and is called “Sunto” by the townspeople.
The large clock visible on the facade also indicates the day of the month. This is still changed manually.