Welcome is Bologna

Museo Civico Medievale

Via Manzoni, 4 - 40121 Bologna (BO)

Phone +39 051 2193930; +39 051 2193916 (biglietteria)

Fax +39 051 232312

Reference maps: C-3

Date of last update: 21/05/2018, 10:11

The Medieval Museum in Bologna tells a compelling story about the often turbulent history of the city. The fascinating collection of bronze statues, armours, handcrafted objects, illuminated manuscripts and monumental tombs is located inside Palazzo Ghisilardi-Fava, in itself a jewel of city architecture.

The Medieval Museum in Bologna is part of Bologna Welcome Card network. Free entry for the Card holders. 

The museum opened in 1985 in Palazzo Ghisilardi-Fava, but the origins of its foundation can be traced back to 1881. The palace was built as a noble residence towards the end of the 15th century and it is one of the most important and beautiful examples of Bolognese architecture, dating back to the period of the Bentivoglio family. The Palace is located in a particular area of the city where many layers of ancient artefacts were brought to light during recent restorations: some Roman ruins of the old Imperial Castle destroyed in 1115 and the 13th century tower of the Conoscenti Family, were incorporated into the palace when it was erected.

The most important part of the museum is dedicated to the Middle Ages. There you will find artefacts from the Early Middle and the large gold-plated copper statue of Boniface VIII, crafted by the Senese goldsmith Manno Bandini in 1301 for the Palazzo Pubblico or City Hall. A great English cope embroidered at the beginning of the l4th century is on exhibit. It is one of the most significant works of the Opus Anglicanum, from St. Domenico Church.

In city whose roots run parallel to that of one of the most significant and oldest universities in the world, this Museum aptly depicts the ancient "Studio". The collection includes various funerary sculptures celebrating the institution's professors (l4th-15th century).

Other important 15th and 16th century sculptures (Iacopo della Quercia, Francesco del Cossa and Vincenzo Onofri) illustrate the development of the Renaissance period art. The museum contains many examples, particularly in the section of bronzes. The model of Giambologna's famous Neptune is housed here, it was the trial for the famous fountain designed for Piazza Maggiore, a masterpiece of l6th century sculpture.

The Museum also displays beautiful collections of armour (an example of 16th century jousting armour is particularly fascinating), ivory and glasswork, including 15th and 16th century glass masterpieces from Murano. The museum is features a section of illuminated manuscripts section (1995) with many important l3th-16th century Bolognese masterpieces. 

by bus: lines and timetables on the website www.tper.it

by car: located in restricted traffic zone ZTL. Ring road exits  n. 11/11bis-12 direction city center.

  • Full € 5.00, reduction € 3.00 (visitors over 65, visitors from 18 to 25, groups of min. 10 people, Comune di Bologna Family Card and YoungERcard holders, special agreements
  • Free admission: first Sunday of each month, young people up to 18, university students with membership card, classes of secondary schools, 2 leaders for each school group, 1 leader for each group of 10 people, 1 adult with a child who attends workshops planned by the museum, tourist guides with badge, journalists with badge, disabled people and their helpers, Icom members, special agreements, people as indicated in clause 4, paragraph 3, letter a, b, d, e, f, g, h, i – Decree n. 507 dating 11/12/1997 and further modifications  (also students and teachers of  Conservatory and other schools as specified in the letter h of the decree), Musei Metropolitani Card owners,  Bologna Welcome Card holders.

Tuesday - Sunday: 10am -6,30pm
Closing days: Mondays (except holidays), 1st January, 1st May and 25th December
24 + 31 December: 10am - 2pm

  • 2 June 2018: 10am - 6,30pm

Guided tours, educational services, bookshop, conference room, access for the disabled, Italian captions, audioguides Italian and English.
Guided tours for schools are available by appointment during the school year. Info: Educational Department tel. +39 051 2193922 - Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9am to 1pm and +39 051 2193933 - Tuesday and Thursday from 1pm to 5pm or edubolognamusei@comune.bologna.it