Questo sito web utilizza i cookie per migliorare la tua esperienza di navigazione. Utilizzando il nostro sito web acconsenti a tutti i cookie in conformità con la nostra policy per i cookie.

logo giardinigonzaga

Corte Virgiliana Gardens (ex corte di Pietole)

The gardens of Corte Virgiliana (formerly Corte di Pietole)

italiano Italian version


Private property, accessible upon request

A few kilometres from Mantua, in Pietole (the ancient Andes), where the Latin poet Virgil was supposedly born, stands Corte Virgiliana, a large and structured architectural complex, still home to an important farm and Gonzaga style rural court. The court presents itself as an imposing body organized in various outbuildings around two large connecting courtyards, defended by through towers and boundary walls; in addition to the residential buildings, there were, in fact, all the outbuildings necessary for a large farm to breed fine horses.
Among the most famous suburban residences, a place of representation and rest after government commitments, the court of Pietole, then Virgiliana, could also be reached by water, by sailing along the river, to its northern mooring. Duke Guglielmo is attributed with the construction of the large stables while the whole complex was enhanced with "fabulous buildings" by Duke Ferdinando. It belonged to the Gonzagas until the beginning of the eighteenth century, when, once it had become wholly owned by the Imperial House, was sold to Count Zanardi and at the beginning of the 19th century to the Varano da Camerino noble family, where it underwent important demolitions and transformations. It has belonged to the Boccalari family since the end of the 19th century, who have preserved the rich architectural heritage of the complex, and, in recent times, dedicated it to tourist accommodation and agritourism.

Of the original complex the marvellous stables, the dwelling and representation building, dating back to the first half of the seventeenth century, the large courtyards and the green areas and spaces remain, the latter being a simplification of the more complex and articulated ones that characterized the Gonzaga court. In particular, the area between the stables, in the form of four parterres kept as simple lawns and partly standing on the ancient boundary, recalls the interior courtyard garden, once integrated with bordering hedges and medicinal plants and fruit trees. The western garden is no less interesting, bordered by residential buildings and a wall, smaller than the original green area, which is structured much like the end of the nineteenth or the beginning of the twentieth century, but with informal additions dating back to the second half of the 20th century.

(From C. Togliani, I giardini di Corte Virgiliana (ex Corte di Pietole), in I giardini dei Gonzaga 2018, pp. 197-204).


footer giardini2