O: "Palazzo della Ragione" - Opening Ceremony

The main internal room of Palazzo della Ragione is 82 meters long and 27 meters wide. It was the ancient seat of the civic courthouses of Padua. Palazzo della Ragione, with its great hall on the upper floor, is reputed to have the largest roof, unsupported by columns, in all of Europe. Construction of the Palazzo was begun in 1172 and was finished in 1219. In 1306 Fra Giovanni, an Augustinian friar, covered the whole building with one roof. Originally there were three roofs, spanning the three chambers into which the hall was at first divided; the internal partition walls remained until the fire of 1420, when the Venetian architects who undertook the restoration removed them, merging all three spaces into one and forming the present great hall “Salone”. The new space was refrescoed by Nicolo' Miretto and Stefano da Ferrara, working from 1425 to 1440. Beneath the great hall, there is a centuries-old market. The entrance to the main room will be through the Palazzo Moroni courtyard and monumental stairs (via VIII Febbraio, see pictures above on the right).