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Ambrosian Library

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Attractions Details

📌 Address

Piazza Pio XI, 2, 20123 Milano MI, Italy

Opening Hours

10:00 AM - 6:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

EUR 15

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Ambra
Local tour guide
"Visit the Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery in the morning when it's less crowded to fully appreciate the intricate details of masterpieces by Leonardo da Vinci and Caravaggio. And don't miss the Codex Atlanticus; ask the staff for the day's scheduled pages on display, as they change regularly, allowing repeat visitors a new experience each time."

What is Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery?

The Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery, or Pinacoteca Ambrosiana, is a unique institution in Milan that captures the essence of cultural splendor and intellectual pursuit. It's where art and academia intertwine in the delicate threads of history. Visitors can feast their eyes on a remarkable collection of artworks by master painters, as well as engage with historical manuscripts and rare books that offer a glimpse into the human quest for knowledge. It’s more than just a library or an art gallery; it represents the beating heart of Milanese culture.

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History of Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery

The Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery was founded in 1609 by Cardinal Federico Borromeo, who was a cousin to Saint Charles Borromeo and a prominent figure in the Counter-Reformation. The cardinal aimed to create a center of enlightenment for the public, integrating both a library and an art collection. The Ambrosiana was one of the first libraries to open its doors to the public in Europe, setting a precedent for the dissemination of knowledge. Noteworthy, Cardinal Borromeo was also an avid collector, and his passion is evident in the extensive collection of art and manuscripts he amassed, which became the foundation of this magnificent establishment.

Why is Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery Important?

The Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery is critically important because it serves as a custodian of Western culture. With its vast repository of knowledge spanning ancient, medieval, and Renaissance periods, the Ambrosiana holds some of Europe’s most invaluable texts, including a version of the 'Iliad' and Leonardo da Vinci's 'Codex Atlanticus'. It’s a place that fosters not just preservation, but the very act of cultural and intellectual expansion. Indeed, for scholars and art lovers alike, the Ambrosiana is a pilgrimage site that offers an unrivaled wealth of historical and artistic treasures.

Things to Do & See at Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery

Embark on a journey through time as you wander the corridors of Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery. Illustrating the depth and diversity of human creativity, one must not miss the 'Codex Atlanticus', the largest collection of drawings and writings by Leonardo da Vinci himself, which displays his genius in a variety of disciplines from anatomy to engineering. The art gallery showcases masterpieces such as Caravaggio’s 'Basket of Fruit', and Raphael’s 'Cartoon of The School of Athens'.

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But there's more to the Ambrosiana than just its famous works. The place is rife with hidden gems, such as intimate sketches by great artists that reveal the process behind their masterpieces. Engage with interactive exhibits that provide deeper insight into the art and literature of bygone eras. Regular lectures, temporary exhibitions, and educational workshops reflect the dynamic nature of this intellectual hub. And if you find peace within the old-world charm, the reading rooms invite you to immerse yourself in the whispers of history contained in its ancient texts.

Frequently asked questions

What is the Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery?

The Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery is a historical institution in Milan, Italy, that contains a library and art gallery featuring a rich collection of manuscripts, drawings, and artworks from various periods.

What are the notable works at the Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery?

Notable works include Leonardo da Vinci's 'Codex Atlanticus', Caravaggio's 'Basket of Fruit', and Raphael's 'Cartoon for the School of Athens'.

What are the opening hours of the Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery?

The opening hours can vary, but it is generally open to the public Tuesday through Sunday, with Monday typically being the weekly closing day. Visitors should check the official website for the most current hours.

Is there an entrance fee for the Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery?

Yes, there is typically an entrance fee to visit the Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery, but there may be reduced rates for students, seniors, and groups. Detailed pricing can be found on their official website.

Can I take photographs inside the Ambrosiana Library & Picture Gallery?

Photography rules may vary, and there might be restrictions on taking photographs of certain items or exhibits. It's best to check their photography policy on the official website or inquire at the gallery before your visit.

Attractions Details

📌 Address

Piazza Pio XI, 2, 20123 Milano MI, Italy

Opening Hours

10:00 AM - 6:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

EUR 15

Find it on google maps