Joy of Museums

Museums, Art Galleries and Historical Sites

Palazzo Pitti

Palazzo Pitti

Palazzo Pitti

The Palazzo Pitti is a vast, mainly Renaissance palace, a short distance from the Ponte Vecchio. The palazzo dates from 1458 and was formerly the town residence of a Florentine banker. The Medici family bought the palace in 1549 and became the chief residence of the ruling families of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany. It grew as a great treasure house as later generations amassed paintings, jewelry, and art.

The Palazzo is now the largest museum complex in Florence. It is divided into several principal galleries or museums detailed below.

A Tour of the Palazzo Pitti

Highlights of the Palazzo Pitti

  • “Madonna del Granduca” by Raphael
    • “Madonna del Granduca” by Raphael was probably in 1505, shortly after Raphael had arrived in Florence. The influence of Leonardo da Vinci, whose works he got to know there, can be seen in the use of Sfumato. The painting is named after one of its owners, the Grand Duke of Tuscany, Ferdinand III. Sfumato is a painting technique for softening the transition between colors, mimicking an area beyond what the human eye is focusing on. Leonardo da Vinci was the most prominent practitioner of Sfumato, based on his research in optics and human vision. He used it in many of his famous works. The word Sfumato comes from the Italian phrase fumo for “smoke.”
  • “John the Baptist in the Desert” by Cristofano Allori
    • “John the Baptist in the Desert” by Cristofano Allori depicts Saint John as an ascetic with long hair, wearing clothes of camel hair. The young John is holding his begging dish as he looks to God. The Gospel of Mark introduces John as a fulfillment of a prophecy from the Book of Isaiah. The prophecy stated that a messenger would be sent ahead, with: “a voice is crying out in the wilderness.” John is described as wearing clothes of camel’s hair, living on locusts and wild honey. John proclaims the baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sin and says another will come after him who will not baptize with water, but with the Holy Spirit.

Galleries or Museums of Palazzo Pitti

  • Palatine Gallery
    • The collection includes over 500 principally Renaissance paintings
  • Royal Apartments
    • A suite of 14 rooms, formerly used by the Medici family, and lived in by their successors
  • Gallery of Modern Art
    • The collection includes the Italian Art schools of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
  • Silver Museum
    • A collection of priceless gold, silver, cameos, and works in semi-precious gemstones.
  • Porcelain Museum
    • Porcelain is from many of the notable European porcelain factories, including Sèvres and Meissen.
  • Costume Gallery
    • The collection includes theatrical costumes and Italian fashions.
  • Carriages Museum
    • The collection of carriages and other conveyances used by the court mainly in the late 18th and 19th centuries.

Questions and Answers about the Palazzo Pitti

  • Tickets for the Palazzo Pitti
    • The Palazzo Pitti is one of Florence’s famous museums and can have very long lines for ticketing. We recommend bookings during the peak season to avoid a long wait in the ticketing line. Or considering purchasing one of the combined city or combined museum tickets which provide skip the line through the fast track lane options.
  •  What are the key museums in Florence?

Palazzo Pitti

  • Name:              Palazzo Pitti
  • English:            Pitti Palace
  • City:                 Florence
  • Country:           Italy
  • Established:    1581
  • Type:               Art Museum, historical site
  • Location:         Piazza de’ Pitti, 1, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy

A Tour of Rome’s Museums and Historical Sites

Florence Museums

Milan Museums

Bologna Museums

Italy

  • Country:                        Italian Republic or Italy
  •  Italian:                          Repubblica italiana or Italia
  • Capital:                          Rome
  • Official languages:        Italian
  • Population                    60.6 million

Italian Proverbs and Quotes

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“What I have dreamed in an hour is worth more than what you have done in four.”
– Lorenzo de’ Medici

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Photo Credit: Sailko [CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)]