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Palazzo del Bargello: Overall view
The massive Palazzo del Bargello was begun in 1255 and was the seat of the Podestà from 1261. In 1574 it became the headquarters of the Bargello (the chief of police) and subsequently parts of the interior were converted into prison cells. A programme to restore the building was begun in 1857 and two years later, after the collapse of the grand duchy of Tuscany, one of the first acts of the provisional government was to establish a new museum in it for post-Antique works of art other than painting.