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PIACENZA AND THE FARNESE FAMILY

Description
The Farnese great dynasty who controlled part of Italy from the 14th to the 18th century, also took hold of the Duchy of Parma and Piacenza. Among its most important members should be mentioned Pope Paul III and Pier Luigi Farnese.
After the foundation, in 1545, of the Duchy of Parma and Piacenza, Pier Luigi abandoned Castro territory and headed to Piacenza, leaving the Apostolic Camera territories. The prestigious family settled in Piacenza and lived there, following historical turns, up to 1731 when Antonio - the last heir of the family - died.

Farnese dominion in Piacenza left its mark on the numerous prized masterpieces of the Renaissance period.

The imposing Palazzo Farnese, built in the second half of the 16th century under the direction of the famous architect Jacopo Barozzi, knows as 'il Vignola', now hosts the Civic Museums. It was built because Margaret of Parma, wife to Ottavio Farnese, wanted to reside in Piacenza. Inside the palace the most interesting masterpieces remain the chamber celebrating the magnificence of Farnese (Sala dei Fasti Farnesiani) and the historical and religious key moments which contributed to the creation of the family powerful dynasty. Let's not forget the famous tondo painted by Botticelli, a truly fascinating work of art.

Again, see the two equestrian monuments portraying Alexander and Ranuccio Farnese in Piazza Cavalli, where the white Carrara marble basements - decorated with little angels and dedicatory writings - bear bronze bas reliefs representing scenes from the political life of Farnese family. As masterpieces of Baroque era, the two sculptures were created by the Tuscan artist Francesco Mochi from Montevarchi, who worked for sixteen years - from 1612 to 1628 - to these pieces commissioned by the population to celebrate the powerful family.

Continuing our visit in the historical centre we see Palazzo Landi, chosen by Farnese as the headquarters to the Council of Justice. One of the main streest of Piacenza, Stradone Farnese, took its name from the noble family who controlled the city for a long time. 
Information Office
Last update
Saturday, 02 December 2017
News and information edited by the Tourist Information Office of the Municipalities of Bobbio, Borgonovo V.T., Castell'Arquato, Piacenza and Vigolzone