The Castle of Mesola is located in the municipality of Mesola in Piazza Umberto I and is one of the many prestigious residences (called delights) of the Estensi. It stands out for its austere and elegant appearance and houses the Center for Environmental Education and the Museum of the Wood and the deer of Mesola.
Castello di Mesola History
The area occupied by the sea until the end of the tenth century, was purchased by the Casa d'Este in the middle of the fifteenth century to build one of the Delizie Estensi. The construction of the imposing architectural complex of the Castle of Mesola began in 1578 by the will of Duke Alfonso II, last descendant of the Este dynasty, eager to leave an important mark on the territory of Ferrara realizing a gorgeous court residence to the point of being able to compete with the most ancient Castle of Ferrara, symbol of the Este domain.
Inspired by the original project of the architect and engineer Marco Antonio Pasi, various managers alternated in the 5 years necessary to complete the work. Nine miles of city walls were erected, as were all the buildings used as stores and stables around which the life of a residence that was transformed from a simple hunting reserve was turning into a renaissance city. The delight presents an architectural plan with a square plan with at the corners four imposing towers crenellated, surrounded by porticoed buildings, making the Castle of Mesola a structure halfway between a luxury home and a fortress.
The amount of materials used, the impressive reclamation work combined with the huge expense for the works, seem to confirm the hypothesis of many historians according to whom the castle, according to Alfonso II's ambitious projects, could contrast the power of Venice on the Adriatic ; these plans, however, did not come to fruition due to lack of time and heirs and so in 1598 the Papal State regained possession of the Duchy of Ferrara and consequently also of Mesola.
To date the entire complex is owned by the Province of Ferrara and has been expertly restored: the rooms of the Castle host conferences and exhibitions preserving the testimonies of its past.
The ground floor is dedicated to the Estense family, with heraldic crests and maps that deepen the history of the estate.
The Piano Nobile, on the other hand, hosts a historical-anthropological itinerary on the Po Delta's cultures and environments divided into various thematic rooms while on the second floor is the new "Museo del Bosco and the Mesola de Cervo", where reconstructions and panels help to understand the biological evolution of the deer and its traces in the history and culture of Ferrara.