Palazzo della Ragione
The building is located in Bergamo’s Città Alta, which is the upper town, embraced by the Venetian walls. Located opposite Palazzo Nuovo, which now houses the “Angelo Mai” Civic Library, and next to the Palazzo del Podestà and the Torre Civica (Campanone), it delineates the south-western side of the old square, Piazza Vecchia.
Palazzo della Ragione is one of the city’s main landmarks, and is one of the oldest Italian town halls, having been built in the 13th century to play host to public assemblies. The ground floor is colonnaded with an arched loggia, which creates a small square that divides Piazza Vecchia – the symbol of political power – from Piazza del Duomo, the symbol of religious power and site of the cathedral, the Colleoni chapel and the basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore.
The ground floor features the hall where justice was meted out, known as the Sala delle Capriate, and where today we can admire masterpieces of sacred art dating from the 13th to the 17th centuries, sourced from several of the city’s churches, such as Alessandro Allori’s Last Supper (on display at the Monastery of Astino in 1582 and transferred to Palazzo della Ragione in the 19th century), and an extraordinary fresco by Bramante, which was originally located on the facade of Casa Suardi (both works were restored a few years ago thanks to the contribution of the Creberg Foundation), as well as several Virgin with Childs from the 13th centuries, Stories of Mary Magdalene and much more besides.