The Duo Torre are two leaning towers, similar to the leaning tower of Pisa, and are located at the intersection of the roads connecting to the five gates of ancient Bologna. These towers were built during the 12th century when Bologna’s skyline was filled with towers. Towers were status symbols. Families based their power on the size of the tower. The more powerful the family the taller they built their tower. The Garisenda Tower is 162 feet high and is 11 feet from perpendicular. Part of the tower was looped off in the 1360s for fear of public safety. It is completely closed to the public. Its neighbor, Toree degli Asinelli, is 334ft high and is 7 ½ feet from perpendicular. Visitors can climb the 500 steps to the top of the tower for views of the ancient and newer city of Bologna and the surrounding countryside. From the top of the tower, one can also see the few remaining 12th-century towers that grace the skyline.
University of Bologna
The University of Bologna is a 20-minute walk from the Piazza Maggiore. The university is home to the world’s oldest complete Torah circa 1200s. The university has paleontological and zoological museums. The Museo Civico Medievale has a Peace Plaque. This 13th-century plaque is a treaty between the city government and students after the government put a student to death for insulting a lady. The Hospital of Death is where medical students used corpses of the executed to study anatomy. The Botanical Garden is one of Italy’s oldest circa 16th century. It is over five acres and contains three greenhouses, medicinal plants, an ornamental area, and forests.
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