Piazza della Signoria, Florence, Italy
NileGuide Expert tip:
Take a stroll through Piazza della Signoria at night. You can take in the sights while sitting in the shadow of masterpieces from the Renaissance.
The Loggia dei Lanzi or Loggia della Signoria is a wide-open gallery of great works of art and sculpture. It brings together the piazza with the Uffizi Gallery flowing down into the Arno River. As the Florentines adored this masterpiece, Michelangelo suggested having loggia encompass the whole Piazza della Signoria. The artist or designer of the Loggia dei Lanzi was Orcagna. He built it between 1376 and 1382 when Benci di Cione and Simone Talenti took over. The name Loggia dei Lanzi
came from the years the Grand Duke Cosimo I was in power, it was used to keep his Lanzichenecchi(Italian) or Landsknechts(German). Shortening it to Lanzi
, these were German mercenary pikemen. As the Uffizi was nearly complete, the Loggia's roof was constructed as a terrace for the Medici so they could watch ceremonies in the piazza away from the peasants. The Loggia's roof was designed by Bernardo Buontalenti. Today, the sculptures of divine beauty that are located inside are Benvenuto Cellini's Perseus
, Giambologna's Rape of the Sabine Woman
and the Rape of Polyxena
by Pio Fedi. Loggia dei Lanzi is gorgeous at night. Take a stroll after dinner to see the Loggia light up.