The Notaries’ Hall in Perugia’s Palazzo dei Priori

The Gothic-style Notaries’ Hall (Sala dei Notari), in Perugia’s Palazzo dei Priori, was built between 1293 and 1443. One of its inlaid friezes features a Latin distich that reads, Ius reddens Iudex semper sis omnibus idem, iudicium alterius iudicis ut fugias, that is: Oh judge, always be fair in your judgment, so you can avoid the judgment of the Higher Judge.

The beautiful hall was “originally called ‘Papal Hall’ because its vaulted ceiling was painted with portraits of some popes. Later, it became known as ‘Notaries’ Hall’ because the local guild met here to judge civil cases.”

“Cardinal Alessandro Riario [1543-1585] promoted the renovation of the hall on April 23 1582, and magistrates had it set up as you see now in order to hold hearings in it. For that purpose, the noble, elevated walnut seat with parapet and balustrade that is still at one end of the hall was built in 1583, with a lower, fenced-in area with seats and bookrests for the litigants in front of it.”

“The wide hall has three naves, and is divided by six large, Doric pillars with three arches and four framed spaces, above which there is a cornice at the base of a series of lunettes. The lunettes have openings in the middle like oval windows. The barrel vault ceiling has bands that from the central nave […] curve and continue up to the walls of the lateral ones” (Serafino Siepi, “Descrizione topologico-istorica della città di Perugia”, Tipografia Garbinesi e Santucci, Perugia 1822).

Here are some images from this historical hall.

Photos via: ©Iggi Falcon, ©Christopher John SSF, ©HEN-Magonza, ©Roberto Bertolle, ©Roberto Favini, ©PhoebeZu

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The Notaries’ Hall in Perugia’s Palazzo dei Priori

Perugia
Piazza Quattro Novembre
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