Address: Piazza dei Cavalieri 4
The museum space “Tower of Count Ugolino” is located inside the Palazzo dell’Orologio in Piazza dei Cavalieri. The visitor is introduced through a historical, literary and artistic path, to the visit of the remains of the famous Tower: following an imaginary time line, a series of illustrative panels and a video describe the historical and Dante’s Ugolino and outline its fortune in the literary and artistic tradition”. The space also hosts an exhibition of valuable antique and illustrated editions of the Commedia and other works created around his tragic legend, set in the 13th century during the war between the Guelphs and Ghibellines.
Visits are temporarily suspended
Dante meets Ugolino in the Hell/Inferno (XXXIII canto) in the circle of the traitors of the homeland, condemned to stay immersed in icy waters and bite the skull of his enemy, Archbishop Ruggeri. The passage confirmed the legend already handed down by popular belief about his terrible end. Accused of having betrayed Pisa against Genoa in the naval defeat of Meloria, the Count was locked up together with his children and grandchildren in the Torre della Muda (then used to keep eagles bred in the period of moulting plumage).
Their tragic end changed the name of the building in Torre della Fame. Here the reality is interlaced with the legend: it is narrated that dead of hunger the sons and the nephews, the count Ugolino would have been fed of their meats. Of this epilogue there are no certain proofs, indeed it seems that it was not so.