Ducal Palace of Modena

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The Ducal Palace of Modena.

The Ducal Palace of Modena is a Baroque palace in Modena, Italy. It was the residence of the Este Dukes of Modena between 1452 and 1859. It currently houses a portion of the Italian Military Academy.


Ducal Palace of Modena, 18th century, unknown artist
Ducal Palace of Modena, 18th century, unknown artist
Ducal Palace of Modena, c.1750, unknown artist

Construction of the palace started under Francesco I d'Este in 1634 and was finished by Francesco V. The palace occupies the site of the former Este Castle, once located in the periphery of the city. Although generally credited to Bartolomeo Avanzini, it has been suggested that advice and guidance in the design process had been sought from Pietro da Cortona, Gian Lorenzo Bernini and Francesco Borromini.

The Palace has a Baroque façade from which the Honour Court and the Honour Staircase can be accessed.

In 1696, Marcantonio Franceschini was commissioned to create a frescoed ceiling for the central Sala d'Onore ("Hall of Honour") for the marriage of Rinaldo d'Este to Princess Charlotte Felicity of Brunswick. The Salottino d'Oro ("Golden Sitting Room"), covered with gilted removable panels, was used by Duke Francis III as his main cabinet of work.

Modern use[edit]

Portrait of Marie Jeanne of Savoy as a widow held at the Ducal Palace of Modena, unknown Artist, c.1680

The Palace currently houses the Italian Military Academy, the Military Museum and a precious Library.

Military ceremonies are held in the Honour Court.

Este births and deaths[edit]

Being a residential palace, a significant number of Este family members were born or died at the palace including:

See also[edit]

Coordinates: 44°38′54″N 10°55′46″E / 44.6484°N 10.9294°E / 44.6484; 10.9294