The Bargello Museum is hosted in a historic palace, built in 1255 to host the Capitano del Popolo (Captain of the People), a military official responsible to keep peace inside the city of Florence. Later on, with the end of the Republic of Florence, the building becomes a prison and the courtyard the place where people is tortured and condemned to death. In 1786 Tuscany, first in the World, abolished the death penalty and banned torture. The prison was moved elsewhere and the building restored to become a National Museum. Incredibly, this place is overlooked by many tourists and it’s open only in the morning, with some exceptions. In my opinion this is one of the top Florence Italy Attractions.
Bargello Museum collections
The Bargello received some private collections and there is a lot of different stuff to see, like coins, seals, pottery, paintings, but the highlight of the Museum is certainly sculpture. The Bargello Museum contains great masterpieces in marble, bronze and terracotta and shows the evolution of sculpture from the gothic age to the Renaissance and Mannerism with works by Donatello, Luca Della Robbia, Andrea del Verrocchio, Michelangelo, Giambologna.
- David – Donatello
- David – Andrea del Verrocchio
- St. George – Donatello
- Sacrifice of Isaac – Lorenzo Ghiberti
- Sacrifice of Isaac – Filippo Brunelleschi
- Bacchus – Michelangelo
- Pitti Tondo – Michelangelo
- Brutus – Michelangelo
- Mercury – Giambologna
Look at this video on the Bargello Museum:
The Bargello Museum can be found at this location:
Actually there is two statues of David by Donatello in the Bargello Museum: one in marble, made in 1408-1409, an early work where the influence of the Gothic style is still visible, and one in bronze, made by a mature Donatello around 1440. Donatello’s bronze David is considered one of the highest points of the Renaissance, and boasts two records: the first unsupported bronze statue and the first nude in modern arts. The statue was commissioned by Cosimo de Medici “the Elder”, main patron in Donatello’s career, to be placed in the courtyard of Palazzo Medici. The hero is represented as a teenager, winner over the giant Goliath, whose head lays at the feet of David.