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Piazza IV Novembre - for city life

  • Piazza IV Novembre - for city life

    Henry James called Perugia the “little city of infinite views” and this feels true of Piazza 1V Novembre, Perugia’s theatrical main square. This was where Roman and Etruscan civilisations once came together. Today, it’s a meeting-place made for café life and cocktails, catch ups over ice-creams and street entertainment. Overlooking the square, Caffe del Banco (officially on 5 Corso Vannucci) works at any time of day. Come for coffee, cocktails on for coffee or a local draft beer, Birra Perugia.

    The square spouts the splendid Fontana Maggiore, a Romanesque masterpiece created by the Pisan father-and-son team, Nicola and Giovanni Pisano, between 1275 and 1278. This pink-and-white marble fountain displays bold decorative flourishes, from the signs of the zodiac to a griffin, the city symbol. On the far side of the fountain rise the steps to the austere Gothic cathedral, where people and pigeons gather to preen and flirt. Inside, the mystic Deposition, painted by Barocci while under the influence of poison proffered by a rival, inspired the Rubens masterpiece known as The Antwerp Descent. Sweeping down from the piazza is the bustling Corso Vannucci. On the right bristle the Gothic crenellations of the Palazzo dei Priori (Town Hall), one of the grandest public palaces in Italy. Fan-shaped steps lead to the Sala dei Notari, the lawyers’ meeting hall, painted at the end of the 13th century.

    Address: Tourism in Perugia: Piazza Matteotti, 18 Loggia dei Lanari, 06100 Perugia
    Web: www.turismo.comune.perugia.it

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