The Asinelli Tower was built in 1109 – 19 by the Asinelli family, but by the following century it had already passed under the control of the Commune. It is 97.20 m-high with a drop of 2.23 metres and an inner staircase of 498 steps completed in 1684. The plinth is surrounded by a small ‘stronghold’ built in 1488 to house the soldiers of the watch. Today, its arcade is occupied by a few craft shops and ateliers, as a memento of the merchants’ trade of the Medieval ‘mercato di mezzo’.

The Asinelli Tower is now under reconstruction. The work, commissioned by the Comune of Bologna and financed by the Fondazione del Monte di Bologna and Ravenna. Work will last a year and also provide a conservative lightning rod of the nineteenth century.
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