Porta San Vitale, Bologna City Gate

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Porta san Vitale in bologna
Autore sconosciuto, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Porta san Vitale in bologna
Autore sconosciuto, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Porta San Vitale belongs to the third city wall of the city of Bologna and is a historical access point to the Emilian capital, with timeless beauty.

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Porta San Vitale in a Nutshel

Despite having lost the enamel of the past, Porta San Vitale continues to maintain considerable historical and cultural importance. Also known by the name of Porta per Ravenna (the gate to Ravenna), its origins go back a long way, just as the strategic position had been carefully chosen. In fact, the gate guarded an important road axis in the eastern area of Bologna, which led directly to the ancient imperial capital.

Its birth dates back to 1286, with construction built in a brick of considerable resistance for that historical period. Along with the gate, internal quarters for the captain and his guards had also been built. Furthermore, the entrance was flanked by an imposing-looking keep, which remained near the site until the early stages of the 16th century.

Currently, Porta San Vitale is located in the Bologna street that includes the same denomination. It is located at the exact crossroads with the nearby via Giuseppe Massarenti, near the adjacent ring road. Though it’s no longer in its prime, it’s still a good transit area within the city.


The history of the gate

As mentioned previously, Porta San Vitale hides a truly important history.

It was subjected to numerous renovations over the centuries, such as the addition of a drawbridge dating back to the second half of the fourteenth century. In two cases, the door was deactivated because it was considered unsafe, between the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The demolition of the drawbridge towards the end of the eighteenth century was another important step.

Over the centuries, the door underwent further modifications until the additional external part and the ravelin were eliminated towards the middle of the last century. The last major restoration works date back to 2009 and have contributed to making this site an even more iconic symbol.

What to See Nearby

A few meters from Porta San Vitale, there is the Sant’Orsola-Malpighi Polyclinic, an important hospital and university center in the city also thanks to the Faculty of Gynecology. Therefore, you don’t have to travel far to reach the Jewish Ghetto and the Quadrilatero area.

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This article was written by:
Ivan Agolino
I am a curious traveler and I passionately dedicate myself to the search for new tastes and emotions. I have made Bologna my home and every day I venture into its alleys to discover some new secret that I transcribe in these articles. I hope I can convey all the love I feel for this splendid city!
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