SCHICI, Franceschino de'
(active 1360s in Montagnana)

General view

Porta Legnago, Montagnana

The castle of Porta Legnago (Rocca degli Alberi) in Montagnana, built by Franceschino de' Schici between 1360 and 1362, was commissioned by Padua's Lord Francesco da Carrara il Vecchio, whose family coats of arms (minced by the Venetians after their submission to the Serenissima in 1405) appear next to the town council of Padua.

This fortress was built at the western gate of the city; the Castle San Zeno already existed at the east. Both castles were originally surrounded by a ditch both inside and outside the walls and thus connected with hoist bridges.

The castle strengthened the perimeter of Montagnana. Its form re-emphasizes the constant preoccupation with defence not only against known enemies, both outside and inside the gates, but also against treachery. A gated entrance courtyard or chamber, supported by two arches over the moat, was succeeded by a drawbridge and a main gate, opening inwards. The latter led to a square chamber flanked by superimposed round-headed arches, and then to a portcullis, followed by another inward-opening gate. The defensive sequence adds up to five chambers, two portcullises, one drawbridge, and at least six gates.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.