Piero's Museum / Palace of the Resistance

The present structure of the building which houses the museum is the result of a series of successive alterations and conversions over a number of centuries. The central nucleus is part of the mediaeval Palazzo della Residenza or Palazzo dei Conservatori del Popolo (the Conservatori ruled the city until it was captured by the Malatesta family in 1371). The lords of Rimini held power until 1430, and during those years the Palazzo was converted to become their private residence. The building was later enlarged to incorporate the former Monte Pio, one of the earliest monti di pietà (pawnbroking establishments), and it took on more or less its present structure around 1456. At that time the Sala dei Conservatori in particular, which contains Piero della Francesca's Resurrection fresco on the wall at one end, was redesigned. The Arco della Pesa, which supports the striking Museum terrace dominating the entrance to the city centre, linked the former Palazzo della Residenza to the XIVth century Palazzo del Capitano, or Palazzo Pretorio, next door. Recent restoration work has led to the recovery of some areas, including the delightful XIVth century roadway which ran along the left-hand side of the former Malatesta building and the basement. Here, in a single large room whose XIVth century structure is perfectly preserved, with its characteristic simple but elegant low cross-vaults with exposed brick ribbing, one can admire Romanesque stone sculptures and the "Cathedral Treasure" consisting of a large number of church ornaments and vestments belonging to the Diocese and stored in the Museum. Equally important was the restoration of the rooms on the first floor, with the reconstruction of the ceilings according to original designs and the opening up of two Gothic mullioned windows overlooking the paved floor of the Arco della Pesa. The most recent restoration work was carried out between 1991 and 1997.

Recent restoration work has led to the recovery of some areas, including the delightful XIVth century roadway which ran along the left-hand side of the former Malatesta building and the basement. Here, in a single large room whose XIVth century structure is perfectly preserved, with its characteristic simple but elegant low cross-vaults with exposed brick ribbing, one can admire Romanesque stone sculptures and the "Cathedral Treasure" consisting of a large number of church ornaments and vestments belonging to the Diocese and stored in the Museum. Equally important was the restoration of the rooms on the first floor, with the reconstruction of the ceilings according to original designs and the opening up of two Gothic mullioned windows overlooking the paved floor of the Arco della Pesa. The most recent restoration work was carried out between 1991 and 1997.