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Cabinet for the Crown of the King of Italy

Author
Domenico Bruschi (design) Alessandro Monteneri and Guglielmo Ciani (sculpted part)
Date
1865
Location
Room 16
Technique
Inlaid mahogany, mother-of-pearl, maple wood
Size
h. 327 cm
Inventory
Prop. Priv. S.M. il Re, no. 357

This imposing cabinet, a gift from the city of Perugia to Victor Emmanuel II, was originally intended to hold the King of Italy’s crown. This masterpiece in cabinet-making was designed by the Perugian artist, and decorated with sculpted parts by Alessandro Monteneri and Guglielmo Ciani.

It is octagonal in shape and has four views of Rome, Florence, Venice, and Naples at the top, surrounded by the same number of statuettes, depicting the virtues.  The top section commemorates battles that were crucial in the unification of Italy under the Savoy monarchy and independence from foreign rule, culminating in the annexing of Rome, which was declared the capital in 1871.

The interior compartment is particularly interesting on account of the small miniatures depicting the faces of some of the most important historical figures, who were much loved in the culture of the Risorgimento period.