Palace of the Jureconsulti

Piazza dei Mercanti, 2. (Open Map)


Built in 1562 to a design by Vincenzo Seregni, with later modifications by architects Carlo Buzzi, Galeazzo Alessi and others, Palazzo dei Giureconsulti was located in what was then Piazza dei Mercanti, on the site of a previous building, Palazzo dei Notai (notaries’ building). The new construction incorporated a tower that had been built by Napo Torriani in May 1272 specially to house the municipal bells, which were a warning signal for the people of the city.The present appearance of Palazzo dei Giureconsulti is therefore the result of a long sequence of demolition, refurbishment and rebuilding operations. Its name is a reference to the building’s juridical functions in earlier centuries, when it was used by the most important magistrates of the city and the dukedom.Today, we see a fine portico in Mannerist style, with semi-circular arches on the ground floor, in perfect correspondence with the rectangular windows on the first floor. The façade is richly decorated, and cadenced by pilasters set on an ashlar masonry surface.During the Renaissance, the Palazzo was used by the Collegio dei Nobili Dottori (College of Noble Doctors), an institution formed to train state administrative staff. In the 19th century, it was adapted for use as the Stock Exchange. It was badly damaged during Second World War air-raids. Extensive restoration operations ensued: the latest was in 1983, coordinated by Gianni Mezzanotte and Roberto Menghi.The building is now used for congresses and headquarters of the Chamber of Commerce.