Piazza della Libertà is the oldest square in Udine, and is considered the most beautiful square on the terraferma, as the Venetian continental possessions were called. It was originally formed as an intersection between the main roads of the town, at the base of a hill with a castle and where a road designed by Palladio leads through an archway by the edge of the square.
The scenography of this square is spectacular: the colonnade of the Palazzo del Comune mirrors that of the Loggia di San Giovanni on the opposite side. Its terrace with statues, columns, and a Renaissance fountain offer spatial dynamism. The line of the square is completed by a clock tower and, in the background, the outline of the castle. The entire composition can be seen from various angles through the columns of the square’s buildings. The nearby Piazza Matteotti is the second oldest in the town, built during the expansion of the fortified interior. Much simpler and with more empty space (it contains a single column and a single fountain), it provides an interesting contrast to the visual richness of Piazza della Libertà.