The Palazzo Pubblico is a palace in the city of Siena, located in the Tuscany region of Italy. The façade of the palace is an example of Italian medieval architecture with Gothic influences: it is curved slightly inwards (concave) to reflect the outwards curve (convex) of the Piazza del Campo, Siena's central square of which the Palace is the focal point. The adjacent Torre del Mangia is the second highest tower in Italy. The tower contained a bell, which could be used to mark the hours, announce curfews at dusk, and summon council members to meetings in the Palazzo. Jutting out in front of the Palazzo is the Cappella di Piazza, a tiny open chapel with sculpted piers and highly decorated capitals and panels. The marble coat of arms of the Medici family, with six palle, stands out in the middle of the façade. It was placed there, after Cosimo de' Medici added the state of Siena to his dominions in 1557. Though at the time he was the Duke of Florence, he later became the first Grand Duke of Tuscany in 1569. The Sala del Risorgimento contains sculpture and Italian painting from the 19th century, including:
- L'incontro a Novara fra Vittorio Emanuele e il Generale Radetsky,
- L'incontro a Teano fra Garibaldi e Vittorio Emanuele,
- Allegoria dell'Italia,
- Le regioni d'Italia.
Other rooms of the Palazzo Pubblico were decorated, in the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance in the style of the Sienese School of painting. Murals include:
- works of political propaganda
- successfu military campaigns and disgraced rebels
Giorgio Vasari's biography of Ambrogio Lorenzetti describes how,
"he painted the War of Asinalunga, and after it the Peace and its events, wherein he fashioned a map, perfect for those times; and in the same palace he made eight scenes in terra-verde, highly finished."
The Sala della Pace has secular decorations by Ambrogio Lorenzetti, that embody the political spirit of the Nove, the governing body of Siena, in the heyday of the republic.
Hall of the World Maps
The large Council Chamber on the first floor has two murals on facing walls:
- La Maesta by Simone Martini.
- The fresco of Guidoriccio da Fogliano, depicts the conquest of the castles of Montemassi and Sassoforte in 1328: the date, 1328, is written in Roman numerals, exactly under the leader's horse. It formed part of a fresco cycle Castelli which occupied the upper part of the wall opposite to the Maestà in the Sala del Mappamondo. The mural which is traditionally attributed to Simone Martini, is one of the earliest of such commemorative images, and contains a vast panoramic landscape with the tents of the soldiers in the background. The horse and its rider dominate the countryside.
The significance of the room's name lies in it having had a map showing the historic extent of Sienese domains.