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fortezza da basso

In Florence we have a State Archive where innumerable documents from the Medici period are kept. Let's discover the exhibition on the personality of Cosimo I dei Medici, the first Grand Duke of Tuscany.

5.03  MG 8147 dettaglio CosimoCosimo was born 500 years ago. The documents on exhibit reveal facts of his life and the clever strategies that young Cosimo, son of Maria Salviati and of Giovanni dalle Bande Nere carried out in his rise to power and in the construction of a new dignitary dimension for the family: the creation (or invention) of the Grand Duchy.
In fact he was a descendant of a secondary branch, but he appropriated the Medici coat of arms, the palaces and the increasingly broad Tuscan territories by war campaigns.
For him, who grew up in the countryside in the villa of Cafaggiolo, the Florentine residence in Via Larga was not enough, and he moved the whole family first to Palazzo Vecchio, the heart of political power and then to Palazzo Pitti, chosen and refurbished as a real " royal palace ".

An art lover like his predecessors, enlightened in the administration of the lands, careful to forge international relationships and friendships, Cosimo became Grand Duke because Pope Pius V procured for him and his heirs this title, invented for the occasion, which raised him to a higher rank than most of the other small Italian States.

Thanks to a selection of the innumerable documents preserved in the Archive, all the political and human affairs of Cosimo come to light: his striking marriage to Eleonora da Toledo, daughter of the Spanish viceroy of Naples; the second marriage with Camilla Martelli; the establishment of important (and still existing) artistic centers such as the Academy of Drawing Arts; and his correspondence with Vasari and Michelangelo Buonarroti.

Cosimo I and the invention of the Grand Duchy is an exhibition that tells the story of a man, a sovereign, a city and a region.
At the State Archive (Archivio di Stato) from November 23, 2019 to February 15, 2020. From January 20 to February 15 the exhibition is only open by appointment, for groups and school groups.





Published: 15/11/2019

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