Palace of Museums

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Palace of Museums

The history of Palazzo dei Musei begins when the Franciscans settled there in 1256, transforming it into a convent. In 1798, due to the Napoleonic suppressions, the site was abandoned and used as barracks and stables. After the Restoration, the building houses the Royal Boarding School and the Royal High School of Chemistry and Physics. Precisely the presence of scientific scholastic institutes leads to the decision, in 1830, to set up the private collection of Lazzaro Spallanzani, then in 1862 the collection nuclei of Gaetano Chierici are set up, the naturalistic collections of zoology of Antonio Vallisneri and the collections of Ethnography, reorganized in 1999. The Portico dei Marmi, established in 1875 and restored in 1991, houses stone artefacts and epigraphs from Roman times to the 18th century. Roman architectural marbles are also exhibited outdoors in the adjacent cloister. The Atrium of the Museums preserves mosaics dating back to the Roman age and to the 12th and 13th centuries. The room dedicated to Roman Reggio (1996-1998) is an ideal extension of the Chierici Collection, and includes archaeological finds from the Roman foundation of the city to late antiquity. In the naturalistic field, the collections dedicated to Geology (1989), to the Fauna of the Reggio area (1992) and the exhibition of the remains of the Valentina whale (2001), a 3.5 million year old fossil cetacean found in the valley of the river Secchia have been added. .

In 2021 the new layout of the second floor will be inaugurated, which offers a narrative from the prehistory of the Reggio area to the early Middle Ages. The historical-artistic section continues from the Este family to the First Tricolor up to the 19th century and the contemporary, represented by the photographic heritage collected or commissioned within the European Photography project. A permanent section, with rotating exhibitions, is dedicated to the production of Luigi Ghirri.


Permanent Collection

Timetable and tickets


via Spallanzani 1
42121 Reggio Emilia


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