The Castle and the Fortress
Soragna Castle has a square floor plan, with four towers at the corners and a fifth at the centre of the main south-facing facade. The Poet’s Gallery runs from the north-west tower connecting the main buildin to the Santa Croce Oratory.
The Castle is known as a fine example of early Baroque style: indeed, its rooms still contain the original unaltered furniture and furnishings, many of which were made and gilded in Venice, and are outstandingly magnificent and elegant.
Nevertheless, there is also evidence of other styles, notably those of the schools of painting of Parma and Lombardy. There are excellent frescoed and stucco decorations on the walls inside the Rocca, executed by talented artists like the brothers Ferdinando and Francesco Galli ‘Bibiena’ and dipicting mythological scenes and episodes connected with the history of the Meli Lupi family.
There are also bible scenes by Giovanni Bolla, charming landscapes and still lifes by Giacomo Facchini, allegorical figures by Giacomo Mercoli and classic scenes by Giovanni Motta. Inside the castle it is possible to admire the work of the famous artists who have followed on from one another for over 600 years: painters like Felice Boselli, Brescianino and G.B. Lazzaroni, sculptors like Luigi da Co’ and Alberto Oliva, and wood carvers like Lorenzo Aili.
An extremely original example of the triumphant Baroque style fashionable in the late 1600s, perfectly preserved without contamination by other styles or eras, can be found in the ‘noble apartments’, in the east wing on the first floor, notable for the quality of the furniture and for the opulent carvings gilded in pure gold. The furniture dates from 1681 and was made on the occasion of the marriage of Ottavia Rossi di San Secondo to Giampaolo Meli Lupi, the first Prince of the Holy Roman Empire and of Soragna.