The Palazzo dei Priori is a historical building in Perugia, Umbria, central Italy
As in other Italian medieval communes, it was the seat of the priori ("first citizens"). This magistrature was established in Perugia in 1303: the palazzo had been called the Palazzo Nuovo del Popolo ("New Palace of the People") to that point.
The structure commands the corner where the main artery of medieval Perugia, Corso Vannucci, enters the city's main square; a first section was constructed in 1293-97, at first as the Palatium Novum Populi, the "new Palace of the People", with ten bays along the Corso and three facing the piazza. Two more bays and a grand entrance portal were added to the piazza façade in 1333-37, together with the arcaded loggia, where decrees were publicly read. Later in the fourteenth century the palazzo was extended along the Corso, with six bays and a richly carved entrance doorway worthy of a cathedral. Rising above, a tower surmounts and controls the arched access to Via dei Priori, the ancient way that descends to the Etruscan gateway, the Roman Porta Trasimena, which was Christianized as the Arca di S. Luca. A further section down the Corso was built in 1429-43, still keeping to the Gothic tripartite fenestration, to house the Collegio del Cambio, the "money exchange" that was the financial center of Perugia.
The grand portal in the Piazza is surmounted by the city's symbols, the griffin of Perugia and the Imperial Guelf lion, in bronze; the originals were probably cast in the Arsenal of Venice, in 1274, the first European bronze castings in the round achieved since Antiquity. Above the door, strung on a bar hanging from chains the keys to the gates of Siena were triumphantly displayed, following the victory of Perugia at the battle of Torrita, 1358.