Ferro (architecture)

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Ferro da facciata
Ferro - Piazza del Duomo.jpg
Ferro in Piazza del Duomo, Florence
MaterialWrought iron

A ferro (plural ferri) or ferro da facciata is an item of functional wrought-iron work on the façade of an Italian building. Ferri are a common feature of Medieval and Renaissance architecture in Lazio, Tuscany and Umbria. They are of three main types: ferri da cavallo have a ring for tethering horses, and are set at about 1.5 metres from the ground; holders for standards and torches are placed higher on the façade and on the corners of the building; arpioni have a cup-shaped hook or hooks to support cloth for shade or to be dried, and are set near balconies.[1]

In Florence, ferri da cavallo and arpioni were often made to resemble the head of a lion, the symbolic marzocco of the Republic of Florence.[2] Later, cats, dragons, horses and fantastic animals were also represented.[2][3]


  1. ^ [s.n.] (2001). Bisol: tra arte e tecnologia (in Italian). Il Ferro Battuto 18 (unpaginated). Accessed October 2015.
  2. ^ a b [staff] ( 26 September 2014). Gatti, cavalli e draghi sui muri di Firenze (in Italian). Nove da Firenze. Accessed October 2015.
  3. ^ John Superti (20 June 2013). Invisible horses: Rediscovering Florence's ferri. The Florentine (186/2014). Accessed October 2015.

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