|Palazzo della Ragione|
One of the most important buildings in Bergamo’s Città Alta is the 12th century Palazzo della Ragione (Palace of Reason), an imposing presence at the southern end of the Piazza Vecchia.
The ground floor walls of the Palazzo were removed in the 15th century to allow a view through the arches into the Piazza Duomo. This gives you glimpses of the sumptuous facade of the Colleoni Chapel, which is in stark contrast to the dark stone of the Palazzo. It is said that court cases used to be heard under the open arcades that now form the ground floor of the Palazzo,which must have provided quite a spectacle for the Bergamaschi.A grand covered stairway, which dates from 1453, rises from the Piazza Vecchia to the first floor of the Palazzo. There are 13th and 14th century frescoes taken from old churches and houses in the area in the upper hall, which can be viewed on the occasions when the upper hall is open for events.
The carving of the lion over the central window was added to the exterior of the building in the last century to recall the period when the Venetians ruled over Bergamo. The Palazzo della Ragione is open to visitors every day except Mondays.