Palazzo Colonna

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The Palazzo Colonna and the Basilica dei Santi Apostoli
Galleria Colonna

The Palazzo Colonna is a noble palace on the Piazza SS. Apostoli in Rome . It has been in the Colonna family for 23 generations and is partially open to the public. The Galleria Colonna located in the building houses an important art collection.


Formerly Palazzo Colonna - Stefano Du Perac 1575
Palazzo Colonna in Rome
Courtyard of the Palazzo Colonna with an ancient column (Colonna) as heraldic symbol

During the Middle Ages there were several smaller buildings belonging to the family of the Counts of Tusculum . In 1417, when Oddo di Colonna was elected Pope, the Western Schism ended and the Popes finally returned from Avignon . As Martin V he reigned until 1431 and during this time work began on the old Palazzo Colonna. Under the Cardinals Bessarion , Pietro Riario and Giuliano della Rovere, later Pope Julius II , parts of the building complex were withdrawn from the Colonna family and used as the residence of the respective title cardinal by SS. Apostoli. During this time, about 1445 to 1490, made significant expansion and dressing, including the frescoes in the Fountain Hall of Pinturicchio . Overall, however, the project of the Cardinal Palace remained unfinished because Giuliano della Rovere during the pontificate of the hostile Pope Alexander VI. (1492–1503) left Rome and after his own election as Pope Julius II in 1503 was no longer interested in the palace, while subsequent titular cardinals limited themselves to living quarters in the Franciscan convent to the north of the church. In the course of the 16th century, the Colonna family received all the components of the complex south of the church back.

The rather castle-like building from the 15th century only got its present appearance in the 17th century with the new wings along the Piazza dei SS. Apostoli and Via della Pilotta. Under Girolamo Colonna I, work on the Galleria Colonna began in 1650 in order to create a suitable setting for the family's growing art collection. From 1666 his nephew Lorenzo Onofrio continued this project. Initially, the architect Antonio Del Grande was commissioned to carry out this work before he was replaced by Girolamo Fontana from 1693, who completed the work on the gallery in 1703.

Galleria Colonna

The Galleria Colonna is one of the most important art collections that arose in Rome after the Renaissance and represents a total work of art consisting of paintings, sculptures, furniture, mirrors and room decorations. The actual gallery space is dedicated to Marcantonio Colonna II as the victor of the Battle of Lepanto in 1571. Giovanni Coli and Filippo Gherardi depicted the theme in this room between 1675 and 1678 in a ceiling fresco. In the Hall of the landscapes twenty years later created the same topic Sebastiano Ricci a ceiling painting and in 1700 was in battle room the fresco with the apotheosis of Marcantonio Colonna II.

The collection includes masterpieces from the 15th to 18th centuries. The artists represented in the Palazzo Colonna include Lorenzo Monaco , Agnolo Bronzino , Domenico Ghirlandaio , Paolo Veronese , Palma il Vecchio , Jacopo and Domenico Tintoretto , Pietro da Cortona , Annibale Carracci , Francesco Albani , Guercino , Guido Reni , Carlo Maratta , Gaspard Poussin , and Pompeo Batoni .

Appartamento Principessa Isabelle

Princess Isabelle Sursock Colonna lived in these rooms until the end of the 1980s and have been open to the public since then. Mostly Dutch painters can be seen here. In addition to smaller pictures by Jan Brueghel the Elder on copper, there are some works by Gaspar van Wittel and Gaspard Poussin .



  • Eduard Safarik: The Colonna Collection of Paintings. Inventories 1611–1795 . Saur, Munich 1996, ISBN 3-598-21693-9 .
  • Christina Strunck: Bernini's unknown masterpiece. the Galleria Colonna in Rome and the art patronage of the ancient Roman nobility (= Roman studies of the Bibliotheca Hertziana, publications of the Bibliotheca Hertziana, Max Planck Institute for Art History), Munich 2007
  • Georg Schelbert: The palace of SS. Apostoli and the cardinal residences of the 15th century in Rome , Norderstedt 2007, pdf

Web links

Commons : Palazzo Colonna  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Schelbert, The Palace of SS. Apostoli and the Cardinal Residences of the 15th Century in Rome , Norderstedt 2007, pp. 134–183.

Coordinates: 41 ° 53 ′ 51.5 ″  N , 12 ° 29 ′ 3.2 ″  E