The idea of opening a weapons museum followed the foundation of the “Regia Pinacoteca” (Royal Picture Gallery), which opened its doors in 1832 within Palazzo Madama. The future Savoy Gallery put the principal works of art from the dynastic collections on public display: the large Beaumont Gallery annexed to the Royal Palace was emptied and in 1833 work began on collecting "all the antique weapons owned by the different institutions” particularly those originating from the Arsenals of Turin and Genoa, together with those of the University and private collections of the sovereigns. In the same year, King Carlo Alberto purchased the important collection of Milanese set designer, Alessandro Sanquirico; instigator of the sale was Captain Vittorio Seyssel d'Aix, who would boost the Armoury’s collection in subsequent years with a variety of items originating from the Parisian antiques market. The museum, which opened to the public in 1837, offered an evocative display in which the eighteenth century decoration of the gallery, designed by architect Filippo Juvarra and embellished by court painter Claudio Francesco Beaumont, contrasted with the arrangement of the items in the display cases and on the walls, in line with a taste for Gothic revival which was dear to European Romanticism.
The large collection of weapons and armour of the Counts Martinengo of Brescia was purchased in 1839; three years later architect Pelagio Palagi completed the Rotonda, in which the weapons and the flags that reached the museum after 1848 and above all the items connected to the Risorgimento wars, were placed in neoclassical display cases; this sector was further enhanced after 1878, with the donation of the collections of Carlo Alberto and Vittorio Emanuele II. During the first half of the 20th century the Armoury’s heritage was increased with the collections of Umberto I and Vittorio Emanuele III and with items from the African wars and the World Wars.
Starting in 1998 the Armoury has undergone a number of renewal operations beginning with the restoration of the stairway of honour designed by Benedetto Alfieri, continuing with the restitution of the medals collection, and terminating in 2005 with the reopening of the Beaumont Gallery and the recovery of the historical exhibition, which had previously been modified to adapt it to more rigorously philological museum criteria.
Tuesdays to Sundays: 8.30 a.m. – 7.30 p.m.
The ticket office closes at 6 p.m.
Last visit: 6.30 p.m.
Closed on: Mondays
The entrance ticket includes a visit to the entire Polo Reale which takes in Palazzo Reale, the Royal Armoury, the Savoy Gallery and the Archaeological Museum.
The ticket office is located at Palazzo Reale – Piazzetta Reale 1.
FULL PRICE 12.00 euros
REDUCED 6.00 euros (18-25 year-olds)
FREE under-18s /over-65s/teachers with school children/tour guides/staff of the Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities/ ICOM members/the disabled and their companions/ holders of the Museum Subscription card and the Torino+Piemonte Card.
Free visit. The duration of the visit is 45 minutes, with groups of a maximum of 25 people. Access for the disabled is guaranteed.
ARMERIA REALE (ROYAL ARMOURY)
Piazza Castello, 191
10122 - Turin
Tel. +39 011 543889
Fax +39 011 5188063
For information: + 39 011 5641729