In 1855, Pope Pius IX, grateful to the Duke of Modena Francesco V, with the bull ‘Vel ab antiquis’ made Modena the seat of a metropolitan archidiocese. In 1976 the Modenese ecclesiastic province incorporated the town of Fidenza, Piacenza and Parma, extending from Bologna to Milan in Emilia-Romagna. This archidiocese is governed by the Archibishop of Modena and Abbot of Nonantola.
The Palace, spreading between piazza Grande, corso Duomo and via Sant’Eufemia, is very large. An edifice has stood here since the XV century, as the rusticated corner demonstrates (the bust represents Nicolò Sandonnini, the bishop who decided the edification; or maybe the bishop Boccaccio). It was entirely rebuilt in 1776.
On the main door, the emblems of the Pope and of bishop holding office. From the balcony, on the 4th june 1988, Pope John Paul II greeted the jubilant crowd.
Over the arch, where corso Canal Chiaro°° begins, a XVIII century sundial still works today and a San Girolamo is represented in relief on the nearby house.
The interior houses a wonderful Baroque chapel.