Piazza delle Erbe - Piazza dei Signori in Verona







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Piazza delle Erbe - Piazza dei Signori in Verona     (Back to Verona main information page)

Originally a major Roman crossroads and the site of the forum, Piazza dell' Erbe is still the heart of the city. As the name suggests, the market used to sell mainly vegetables, but nowadays it has been largely taken over by ugly, semi-permanent booths selling clothes, souvenirs, antiques and fast food. The rich variety of buildings framing the square is far more attractive. Most striking are the Domus Mercatorum (on the left as you look from the Via Cappello end), which was founded in 1301 as a merchants' warehouse and exchange, the fourteenth-century Torre del Gardello and, to the right of the tower, the Casa Mazzanti , whose sixteenth-century murals are best seen after dark, under enhancing spotlights.

The neighbouring Piazza dei Signori used to be the chief public square of Verona. Much of the right side is taken up by the Palazzo del Capitano , which is separated from the Palazzo del Comune by a stretch of excavated Roman street. Facing you as you come into the square is the medieval Palazzo degli Scaligeri , residence of the Scaligers; a monument to more democratic times extends from it at a right angle - the fifteenth-century Loggia del Consiglio , former assembly hall of the city council and Verona's outstanding early-Renaissance building. The rank of Roman notables along the roof includes Verona's most illustrious native poet, Catullus. For a dizzying view of the city, take a sharp right as soon as you come into the square, and go up the twelfth-century Torre dei Lamberti (Tues-Sun 9.30am-6pm).

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