Torre Prendiparte o Coronata

Tower in Bologna

Torre Dei Prendiparte
CC BY-SA 4.0 / TeKappa

The Prendiparte Tower, also known as the Coronata Tower, was originally constructed in the 12th century by the Prendiparte family, a prominent guelph family in Bologna, as a defensive structure. Standing at a height of 60 meters, it is the second tallest tower in the city after the Asinelli Tower. Interestingly, it was initially intended to be even taller, but for reasons unknown, its height was reduced.

Thanks to recent restoration efforts, all 12 floors of the tower are now fully accessible. Alongside other ancient structures, this tower stands as one of the oldest preserved buildings in Bologna. Built with the distinctive “Bolognese” red bricks and robust selenite blocks, it presents the appearance of an impregnable medieval fortress. The Prendiparte Tower was originally commissioned by the influential Cardinal Paleotti and remained a subject of contention for centuries. Initially, it served as an extension of the Archdiocesan Seminary. Later, when the seminary relocated, Cardinal Lambertini, who would later become Pope Benedict XIV, repurposed the tower as the Archbishop’s prison for offenses against religion or Christian ethics.

Within the tower, on the 3rd, 4th, and 5th floors, which were once used as cells, visitors can still find reddish inscriptions and graffiti. These markings, primarily consisting of lamentations and allegorical figures, have become visible through recent renovation works and were etched into the tower’s bricks. The lower three floors were converted into a residence at the end of the 18th century when the tower was seized by Napoleon’s troops. The alterations made during that period included the addition of large windows to create a more habitable living space.

Ascending the secure staircase to the top floor, visitors can access a spacious terrace with a sturdy railing. From this vantage point, one can enjoy a breathtaking view of Bologna’s rooftops, buildings, hills, and plains. Today, the tower has found a new purpose as a guesthouse, providing a captivating and evocative setting for events and unique stays.

The Torre Prendiparte o Coronata appears in our Complete Guide to Visiting Bologna!

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Visiting Torre Prendiparte o Coronata


Open on Sundays 11am-2pm; 2:30pm-6:30pm

Address: Torre Prendiparte (Sky Experience), Piazzetta Prendiparte, Bologna, Metropolitan City of Bologna, Italy
Duration: 20 minutes

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