The museum is characterized by the book and art collection of Domenico Rossetti (b. & d. Trieste 1774-1842) dedicated to Francesco Petrarca (b. Arezzo 1304 - d. Arquà 1374) and Enea Silvio Piccolomini (b. Siena 1405 - d. 1464), Bishop of Trieste from 1447 to 1450, the only one to become Pope under the name of Pius II. The collection has been in the Civic Library since 1847. The heritage is described in 4 catalogues available from the Polo SBN Portal and the ERPAC Friuli Venezia Giulia Portal: Index Sbn (books); SIRPAC Friuli Venezia Giulia (prints, works of art, numismatics and other iconography); Integrated Cultural Catalogue of the City of Trieste (incunabula) and MANUS on line (manuscripts).
The bibliographic collection of Petrarca is the second in the world after the one created at Cornell University Library in Ithaca (N.Y) and consists of 78 manuscripts, 359 letters and acts, 6300 books - of which 1400 are antique (121 incunabula, 686 dating back to the sixteenth century and 700 examples of iconography.
Among the 700 specimens of Iconography there are 2 wedding boxes, 27 paintings, 1 marble bas-relief, a genealogical tree, coins and medals together with 600 prints.