Soprana and 250 years of goldsmiths’ workshops

Goldsmiths captured in an engraving

In 1770 Cristoforo Dall’Acqua photographed in an engraving the goldsmith stores under the Palladian loggias.
In the 1500s Vicenza was also an important municipality for goldsmithing with prominent representatives such as Valerio Belli and the Capobianco family, but as early as 1339 written documents spoke of goldsmiths’ workshops and the “Fraglia degli orefici” present in the Palazzo della Regione (now the Basilica Palladiana). It was not until 1770, thanks to this work by Dell’Acqua, that visual proof of this was finally available.

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Pocket watch of Garibaldi

Vicenza and the pocket watch of the Hero of the Thousand

The pocket watch was restored to its former glory by Stefano and Matteo Soprana in a long and painstaking restoration project
Orologio Garibaldi

Garibaldi’s pocket watch has a gold case, is of Swiss construction and is unfailingly innovative.

A precious object because at the time, people listened to the bells to find out what time it was, and watches at the time were a luxury that only a few, bourgeois and military, like General Garibaldi, could afford.

His pocket watch, which is kept in a safe at the Museum of the Risorgimento and Resistance at Villa Guiccioli above Monte Berico, has been restored by Gioielleria Soprana in a long and painstaking restoration that has practically brought it back to its former glory.

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Jewellery Museum

 A museum dedicated to Italian goldsmithing and jewellery art



Vicenza, it is known, is the City of Gold, as it boasts of producing one third of all Italian gold work.
Since antiquity, Vicenza has been one of Italy’s main centres for goldsmith production: as early as 1400, the Fraglia degli Orafi di Vicenza (Vicenza Guild of Goldsmiths), an association comprising no less than 150 artisans, was established.

But the vocation as a city of gold has much older origins. Its beginnings can be attributed to the Paleovenetian age, around the 8th century B.C., when the ancient Venetians began to express a craftsmanship already capable of producing worked metal objects of various kinds.

Their fame as skilled gold wielders and creators of wonders did not take long to spread throughout Italy, being immediately appreciated by the Venetians and later by the Church, which entrusted Vicenza’s craftsmen with the creation of precious artefacts. The period between the end of the 13th century and the 15th century offers interesting works of sacred goldsmithing: processional and processional crosses, precious chalices, reliquaries that document the development of local goldsmithing art and are currently conserved by the Diocese of Vicenza at the Diocesan Museum in Vicenza.

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Soprana n°6

The first 6-hour wristwatch

On the 150th anniversary of the unification of Italy, the Soprana watch company, one of Italy’s 150 historic enterprises, and Movitalia, importer of the prestigious single-hand watch brand Meistersinger, create the first six-hour wristwatch.

An instrument for measuring time designed in 1794 by Giambattista Rodella, a genius watchmaker at the Specola in Padua, finally takes shape in an exclusive design.
In the history of watchmaking, the role of Italian master craftsmen has been fundamental

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The Jewel of Vicenza

A jewel in the city of Palladio


Perhaps not everyone knows that Vicenza holds a jewel, the reproduction of the city surrounded by walls made entirely of silver

In 1577 the City Council, with the opinion of many excellent Venetian masters and Andrea Palladio, decided to donate the model of the city as an ex voto to the Madonna of Monte Berico to ward off the plague. It was built in a wooden structure and then covered with silver plates. Unfortunately the Napoleonic troops defrauded and destroyed it in 1797.

There are various testimonies of this model, among which important are the reproductions in the paintings of Alessandro Maganza and Francesco Maffei.

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