Palazzo dei Conservatori, Campidoglio (The Capitoline Hill)

designed c. 1537(?); begun 1563

The monumental stairway to the Campidoglio

Michelangelo was commissioned by Pope Paul III to restructure the Campidoglio (Capitoline Hill), one the ancient hills of Rome and a center for the worship of Jupiter during the Roman Empire. This new design would become a symbol of the New Rome of the Popes. His design changed the facades of two of the existing buildings, added a new building for balance, and incorporated an oval pavement design.

Palazzo dei Conservatori

The highly rational building uses the gigantic Corinthian order, which ties together the two stories. Interposed within the colossal Corinthian pilasters are smaller Ionic columms on each side of the loggia openings and on each side of the second story windows. The whole is crowned with a balustrade with statues accenting the upward thrust of the pilasters. The flat roof and straight entablature (rather than the use of arches) is characteristic of Michelangelo's architecture.

The entrance bay and one of the other bays

A detail of the bottom and top of one of the bays

The loggia and a detail of a window of the loggia

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Copyright Mary Ann Sullivan. I have photographed (on site), scanned, and manipulated all the images on these pages. Please feel free to use them for personal or educational purposes. They are not available for commercial purposes.

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