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Arco di Porta Romana, Milan

Categories: Landmarks, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
3.4/5 based on 40+ reviews on the web
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  • Access to historical city through the sixteenth century Spanish walls (the "bastions", still visible on site), the arco di Porta Romana was built in 1598 designed by Aurelio Trezzi to welcome Mary Margaret of Austria headed to Madrid to marry Philip III of Spain. At that time the Roman gate was one of eight major ports, along with p. Comasina, New, Oriental (modern p. Venezia), Vigentina, Lodovica, Ticinese and Vercellina. Set in the middle of the busy Piazza Medaglie d'Oro (dedicated to the fallen) the door welcomes those heading in Corso di Porta Romana, an important and lively thoroughfare leading downtown through Piazza Missori.
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  • The main entrance to the city of Milan occurred from the Southeast, along the established – at present – from corso Lodi and corso di Porta Romana; but access to the city that had the name of Porta Romana went moving over time following the enlargement of the city itself and its walls. The Arco di Porta Romana that today we see is only the last in order of time: it is not of Roman (as-alas-some think would be at Piazza Missori!!), it's not even of medieval times (it would be the height of the Cross), but is of the Spanish era and belonged to the ramparts built starting from 1549 the Governor Ferrante Gonzaga (11 km long , included the Castello Sforzesco). At the time of construction of the walls, actually, was just a gap, but since had to Margaret of Austria-Styria had to enter from there on his journey to Spain, where he married Prince Philip (who later became Philip III), the Milanese decided to turn it into something particularly sumptuous: a solid stone door. When, on 30 November 1598 Margherita made his entrance in Milan, passed to this bow in stump lombardo, covered with inscriptions carved in granite and marble of Candoglia greeting (there were also the names of the most excellent men in Milan who – together with the viceroy/Governor Spanish-built!) and bas-reliefs – accompanied by mottoes-businesses (the coats of arms of families): a Pearl (in Latin "margarita") in a clamshell lying on the sea waves, two palm trees juxtaposed, which allude to the marriage, a flying Dove with an olive branch in its beak. And the bow – in itself-has remained largely unchanged since then, even if you have changed the inscriptions, in deference to the dominators on duty: in the 20th century, the bow was separated from the walls and it reset the surrounding area, has become a cumbersome traffic island in the middle of square gold medals, which no one pays attention. Not a single pole of the Comune di Milano, showing at least some information and invite passers-by/tourists to visit: such a shame, because this door – sung in recent times by Article 31 in Milan Milan ("the Sun is falling behind porta romana") deserves some attention; as might merit the few remains of the ancient Spanish walls that are next door, restored a few years ago and for which there is no maintenance (behind them there is a Liberty-style building, built in 1906, as a second funeral service tram station which had the nice name "la Gioconda" is now the seat of the Terme di Milano). In fact, it deserves a little more attention from tourists (also of the Milanese) the entire course, which was – during the period, roughly from 1500 to 1800, the noble contrada of the city, in which alternate with beautiful and unknown grandiose palaces, monuments (the Basilica of san Nazaro, Velasca Tower, the Church of san Giovanni in conca, the most significant), hidden gardens within/among the buildings , historical workshops (optics Arnaldo altar boys, pharmacy, etc.). Recommend you try to walk it with your eyes open and your nose in the air!
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  • Living near this ancient gate that faces in the southern part of the city in the direction of Rome, I have an opportunity to see it on a daily basis and note with disappointment that the urban choice, made in the distant past, to isolate it completely than the Spanish walls, in adjacent avenues, effectively turned it into a kind of traffic islands in the middle of piazza Medaglie d'Oro. It's a shame because the conservation status is very good and deserved to be more valued.
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