Le Dimore del Quartetto

VILLETTA PALLAVICINI, GALLICANO (ROMA)

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In 1669, Prince Giovan Battista Rospigliosi bought the Castles of Gallicano and Colonna along with the whole state of Zagarolo from the Ludovisi family. The following year, by marrying Maria Camilla, niece of Cardinal Lazzaro Pallavicini, he inherited the title, coat of arms and name.
On the 29th of March 1729, Nicolò Palavicini bought a vineyard and cottage for 1500 scudi from Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s father in the Gallicano territory, in the San Pastore district: it is known today as the “villetta”, immersed in a large park.
Among pine-trees, cedars and horse-chestnuts, there is an elliptical pond surrounded by a balustrade: this is the fountain that Bernini designed to reflect the Casino dell’Aurora into the hanging garden at the Pallavicini’s palace in Rome, which was transported early in the century to the front of the house that had once been his own home.
An avenue of cypress trees leads to a small 19th century church dedicated to St. Francis. Wide open spaces surrounded by gazebos create the atmosphere of a “green lounge.” A cool swimming pool becomes an area of relaxation and refreshment in the evening.