The Great Hall
From ufficio dlm
The Great Hall is considered the state room of the University of Padua. From the sixteenth century
to the nineteenth century, it housed the Faculty of Law and was also where Galileo Galilei
exceptionally taught during his time at Padua. The present-day appearance of the Hall dates largely
back to the changes requested by then-Rector Giuseppe de Menghin from 1854 to 1856, who
commissioned Giulio Carlini to fresco the ceiling with an Allegory of Wisdom, surrounded by the
Sciences and the portraits of the four central figures associated with the university’s history: the
jurisconsult Emo amongst the founders of the university, Cardinal Francesco Zabarella, Galileo
Galileo, and the physician Giovan Battista Morgagni.
The subsequent addition from the twentieth century is the podium, built in the early 1940s by Giò
Ponti upon request from then rector Carlo Anti. It is there where the university motto is inscribed:
Universa Universis Patavina Libertas .