Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne

Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne

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The Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne is a Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

 palace
Palace
A palace is a grand residence, especially a royal residence or the home of a head of state or some other high-ranking dignitary, such as a bishop or archbishop. The word itself is derived from the Latin name Palātium, for Palatine Hill, one of the seven hills in Rome. In many parts of Europe, the...

 in Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

, Italy. The palace was designed by Baldassarre Peruzzi in 1532-1536 on a site of three contiguous palaces owned by the old Roman Massimo family and built after arson
Arson
Arson is the crime of intentionally or maliciously setting fire to structures or wildland areas. It may be distinguished from other causes such as spontaneous combustion and natural wildfires...

 destroyed the earlier structures during the Sack of Rome (1527)
Sack of Rome (1527)
The Sack of Rome on 6 May 1527 was a military event carried out by the mutinous troops of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor in Rome, then part of the Papal States...

. In addition the curved façade was dictated by foundations built upon the stands for the stadium (odeon
Odeon (building)
Odeon is the name for several ancient Greek and Roman buildings built for singing exercises, musical shows and poetry competitions. They were generally small in size, especially compared with a full-size ancient Greek theatre....

) of the emperor Domitian
Domitian
Domitian was Roman Emperor from 81 to 96. Domitian was the third and last emperor of the Flavian dynasty.Domitian's youth and early career were largely spent in the shadow of his brother Titus, who gained military renown during the First Jewish-Roman War...

. It fronts the now-busy Corso Vittorio Emanuele, a few hundred yards from the front of the church of Sant'Andrea della Valle
Sant'Andrea della Valle
Sant'Andrea della Valle is a basilica church in Rome, Italy, in the rione of Sant'Eustachio. The basilica is the general seat for the religious order of the Theatines.-Overview:...

.

The entrance is characterized by a central portico with six Doric columns
Doric order
The Doric order was one of the three orders or organizational systems of ancient Greek or classical architecture; the other two canonical orders were the Ionic and the Corinthian.-History:...

, paired and single. Inside there are two courtyards, of which the first one has a portico with Doric columns as a basement for a rich loggia, which is also made of Doric columns. The column decorations gave the name to the palace, alle Colonne. The façade is renowned as one of the most masterful of its time, combining both elegance with stern rustication
Rustication (architecture)
thumb|upright|Two different styles of rustication in the [[Palazzo Medici-Riccardi]] in [[Florence]].In classical architecture rustication is an architectural feature that contrasts in texture with the smoothly finished, squared block masonry surfaces called ashlar...

. The recessed entrance portico differs from typical palazzo
Palazzo
Palazzo, an Italian word meaning a large building , may refer to:-Buildings:*Palazzo, an Italian type of building**Palazzo style architecture, imitative of Italian palazzi...

 models such as exemplified by the Florentine
Florence
Florence is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany and of the province of Florence. It is the most populous city in Tuscany, with approximately 370,000 inhabitants, expanding to over 1.5 million in the metropolitan area....

 Palazzo Medici. In addition, there is a variation of size of windows for different levels, and the decorative frames of the windows of the third floor. Unlike the Palazzo Medici, there is no academic adherence to superimposition of orders, depending on the floor. On the opposite façade of this palace, opening onto the Piazzetta dei Massimo, the palace connects with the frescoed façade o the conjoined annex, the Palazzetto Massimi (or Palazzetto Istoriato). For many centuries, this used to be the central post office of Rome, a Massimo family perquisite. To the left of the palace is the Palazzo di Pirro, built by a pupil of Antonio da Sangallo
Antonio da Sangallo
Antonio da Sangallo may refer to:* Antonio da Sangallo the Elder , Florentine architect* Antonio da Sangallo the Younger , , Florentine architect and the Elder's nephew...

.

The interior ceilings and vestibules are elaborately ornamented with rosettes and coffer
Coffer
A coffer in architecture, is a sunken panel in the shape of a square, rectangle, or octagon in a ceiling, soffit or vault...

ed roofs. The entrance ceiling is decorated with a fresco by Daniele da Volterra
Daniele da Volterra
Daniele Ricciarelli , better known as Daniele da Volterra, was an Italian mannerist painter and sculptor.He is best remembered for his association, for better or worse, with the late Michelangelo. Several of Daniele's most important works were based on designs made for that purpose by Michelangelo...

, who represented scenes from the Life of Fabio Massimo, the supposed Roman founder of the Massimo family.

The chapel on the second floor was a room where the 14 year-old Paolo Massimo, son of Fabrizio Massimo, was recalled briefly to life by Saint Philip Neri
Philip Neri
Saint Philip Romolo Neri , also known as Apostle of Rome, was an Italian priest, noted for founding a society of secular priests called the "Congregation of the Oratory".-Early life:...

on March 16, 1583. The interior of the palace is open to the public annually only on that day. Other notable events in the palace of the 16th century including various intrafamilial murders.

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