The main office

Rocca Albornoz cortile internoIn 1354 in order to defend the possessions of the church Cardinal Albornoz began the construction of the Fortress of Viterbo, pulling down some buildings and incorporating others in the northern part of the town, close to the city wall.

In 1506, Bramante was called in by Pope Julius II della Rovere to redesigned the fortress to give it a more orderly appearance. He built around the rectangular courtyard, two symmetrical galleries on each side, and a fountain at the centre with the papal coat of arms. Later, Pope Paul III Farnese contributed with another significant change to the austere Albornozian structure, opening a long portico facing the piazza, at the base of which is engraved a commemorative inscription.

The monumental complex has been involved in many troubled events until the early 1960s, when the first restoration activities began, and later, in the 1980s, when the building was made a museum.