The ETRU National Etruscan Museum is housed in two magnificent Renaissance villas, surrounded by greenery and featuring an abundance of open-air spaces. These are temples of culture, but also oases of peace where visitors can experience the splendour of one of the most distinguished periods of Italian history and architecture.
Constructed by Pope Julius III, Giovanni Maria Ciocchi del Monte, between 1550 and 1555, Villa Giulia is a stunning Renaissance villa featuring a landscaped garden with terraces connected by spectacular stairways, nymphaea and fountains.
The greatest artists of the era – Jacopo Barozzi da Vignola and Bartolomeo Ammannati, with the contribution of Michelangelo Buonarroti and Giorgio Vasari – were involved in the design of the Villa, while some decorative elements were produced by Prospero Fontana, assisted by a team of artists as Pietro Venale da Imola and Taddeo Zuccari.
The hemicycle is decorated with subtle paintings inspired by the grotesques of Rome’s Domus Aurea. The rooms on the first floor contain an extraordinary series of frescoes, including the representations of the Seven Hills of Rome.
In 1889, the Villa became the seat of the National Etruscan Museum.