Museo Civico (Civic Museum), Catania

Museo Civico (Civic Museum), Catania

The Biscari Museum had been closed. The Biscari collections and the collection Benedettini needed a new home. In 1934 Guido Libertini, Superintendent of Antiquities, found that home; the massive Ursino Castle. The castle was the only edifice capable of housing the Biscari and Benedettini collections and the Asmundo collection as well.

The Ursino Castle ("Bear Castle") was built in the 13th century. It was meant to be a royal castle of the Kingdom of Sicily. During the time of the Sicilian Vespers it became the home of the Sicilian Parliament. It has remained in good condition and it currently serves well as an art museum.

The castle is laid out in a rectangle. It has four circular towers at each corner and an open air courtyard. On the ground floor is the Arms Room. The Arms Room houses the ticket office and a large collection of weapons. Other rooms on the ground floor house various Greek and Roman antiquities, including statues, figurines, vases and mosaics.

The first floor (second floor in U.S.) houses 17th and 18th century masterpieces, featuring paintings by Matthias Stormer, Pietro Novelli, Caravaggio, Mario Minniti, Andrea Vaccaro and others. Some rooms on the floor are dedicated to individual artists.

The Open Space is a large room for temporary exhibitions and sculptures. A neighboring room houses numismatics and engravings.

Like the castle, the collections are vast. The Museum is a definite "must see" for art and history lovers.

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Museo Civico (Civic Museum) on Map

Sight Name: Museo Civico (Civic Museum)
Sight Location: Catania, Italy (See walking tours in Catania)
Sight Type: Museum/Gallery
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Catania, Italy

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