Even older than Palazzo Vecchio, Palazzo del Bargello, dating from around 1255, was born as a Florentine public building. It owes its name to the Medici period, when in the sixteenth century it was the seat of the Captain of Justice, called "Bargello". Its internal structure was disrupted when it became a Florentine prison. In 1865, the year of Florence as the capital of Italy and the sixth centenary of Dante's birth, the Bargello Museum was officially opened as the first Italian National Museum.
In the evocative rooms of the medieval palace are housed splendid collections, especially Medici, of ivories, goldsmiths, oriental fabrics, but the protagonist of the museum is the famous David by Donatello, preserved in the giant hall along with other works of the artist and his famous contemporaries, such as Brunelleschi, Ghiberti and Verrocchio. On the ground floor, entering from the beautiful courtyard with the well and the red brick floor, you enter the room dedicated to Michelangelo and his works such as the Bacchus and the Tondo Pitti. In the same room we find the expressive giant bust depicting Cosimo I, the work of Benvenuto Cellini, author of the famous Perseus in Piazza Signoria, and Giambologna's famous Mercury in flight, driven by the breath of wind that comes out of the mouth of Zèfiro.