Today there is a museum where you can see art such as pottery, jewelry, drawings and sculptures, alongside works of art and objects in permanent exhibitions. The museum is called National Museum of Palazzo Venezia (Museo Nazionale del Palazzo Venezia).
The palace was built for the Venetian Cardinal Pietro Barbo, later Pope Paul II, who built the palace near the nearby Via del Corso - the main street of Rome in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. At first it served as an official residence for the Popes.
During the reign of Pope Pius IV, the palace, formerly serving residential purposes, was awarded to the Republic of Venice as an embassy. During the 19th century the palace became the Embassy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire to the Holy See. In 1917 the ownership was transferred to the Italian government and the place became a government office.
The Duce Benito Mussolini, who was an Italian tyrant and ruler of Italy between 1922-1943, renovated the place to serve as headquarters. From the balcony facing the square he carried out his fiery speeches.