The 16th century Palazzo Crivelli, in Via dei Banchi Vecchi, is much better known by its nickname, the Palazzo dei Pupazzi (Palace of the Puppets).
The palazzo was built in 1538 by Gian Pietro Crivelli, a rich goldsmith from Milan. The richly decorated facade is the work of Giulio Mazzoni (1525-1618). The military emblems were thought to resemble puppets, which is how the palazzo acquired its nickname.
The facade sports a Latin inscription to Crivelli, which reads: PETRVS CRIBELLVS MEDIOLANEM SIBI AC SVIS A FVNDAMENTA EREXIT (Pietro Crivelli from Milan erected this building for himself and his heirs). The facade also sports the names and coats of arms of three popes. Towards the top of the building are two bas-reliefs, which depict Charles V kissing the foot of Pope Paul III and Pope Paul III and the reconciliation of Charles V and Francis I at Nice.
There is another palazzo in Rome that also carries the nickname the Palazzo dei Pupazzi, namely the 18th century Palazzo Centino-Toni.
My name is David Lown and I am an art historian from Cambridge, England. Since 2001 I have lived in Italy, where I run private walking tours of Rome.
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