House of Medici

Giovanni di Bicci de' Medici, founder of the Medici bank
The Confirmation of the Rule, by Domenico Ghirlandaio
Cosimo Pater patriae, Uffizi Gallery, Florence
The Medici Wedding Tapestry of 1589
Cosimo I, founder of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany
From left to right: The Grand Duchess Maria Maddalena, The Grand Duke Cosimo II, and their elder son, the future Ferdinando II
Cosimo III, the Medicean grand duke, in Grand Ducal regalia
Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici, the last of the Grand Ducal line, in Minerva, Merkur und Plutus huldigen der Kurfürstin Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici (Minerva, Mercury and Pluto pay homage to the Electress Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici) after Antonio Bellucci, 1706
The family of Piero de' Medici portrayed by Sandro Botticelli in the Madonna del Magnificat.
Medici family members placed allegorically in the entourage of a king from the Three Wise Men in the Tuscan countryside in a Benozzo Gozzoli fresco, c. 1459.
Here seen sliced in half, an art historian suggests that whole blood oranges could be the imagery in the Medici coats of arms
Old coat of arms of the Medici used by Giovanni di Bicci and Cosimo the Elder
The intermediate coat of arms of the Medici, Or, six balls in orle gules
The "augmented coat of arms of the Medici, Or, five balls in orle gules, in chief a larger one of the arms of France (viz. Azure, three fleurs-de-lis or) was granted by Louis XI in 1465.<ref name=Woodward162>John Woodward, A Treatise on Ecclesiastical Heraldry, 1894, p. 162</ref>
Great coat of arms of Medici of Ottajano
Augmented Arms of Medici
Coat of Arms of the Grand-Duke of Tuscany
Coat of arms of Medici popes
Coat of arms of the Medici Cardinals
Coat of Arms of Catherine of Medici, as Queen of France
Coat of Arms of Maria of Medici, as Queen of France
Achievement of the House of de' Medici
Coat of Arms of the Grand-Duchy of Tuscany

Italian banking family and political dynasty that first began to gather prominence under Cosimo de' Medici, in the Republic of Florence during the first half of the 15th century.

- House of Medici

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Cosimo III de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany

Cosimo in granducal robes, with Tuscan regalia
Ferdinando II de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, Cosimo III's father, and Vittoria Della Rovere, his mother, by Justus Sustermans
Marguerite Louise d'Orléans, Cosimo's wife, after Louis Edouard Rioult
Cosimo around 1660, by Sustermans
A contemporary piastra bearing the effigy of Cosimo III. Latin inscription: COSMVS III D[EI] G[RATIA] MAG[NVS] DVX ETRVR[AE]. "Cosimo III, by the Grace of God, Grand Duke of Etruria (Tuscany)"
Cosimo III, Grand Duke of Tuscany, engraving by Adriaen Haelwegh before 1691, from the collection of the National Gallery of Art
Ferdinando de' Medici, Cosimo's elder son, after Niccolò Cassana.
Cosimo III in old age, by Jan Frans van Douven
Portrait of Gian Gastone de' Medici
The Grand Duke in the latter years of life
The Electress Anna Maria Luisa, after van Douven
Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor, by Johann Gottfried Auerbach
Bust of Cosimo III de' Medici, 1717-1718 CE. By Giovanni Battista Figgini. Marble, from Italy, Florence. The Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Cosimo III de' Medici (14 August 1642 – 31 October 1723 ) was Grand Duke of Tuscany from 1670 until his death in 1723, the sixth and penultimate from the House of Medici.

Medici Bank

Giovanni di Bicci de' Medici
Cosimo de' Medici
Lorenzo de' Medici
The poor credit risk, Edward IV
Poliziano with Giuliano as a child

The Medici Bank (Italian: Banco dei Medici ) was a financial institution created by the Medici family in Italy during the 15th century (1397–1494).

Grand Duchy of Tuscany

Italian monarchy that existed, with interruptions, from 1569 to 1859, replacing the Republic of Florence.

The Grand Duchy of Tuscany from 1815 to 1847.
Cosimo I de' Medici
Coat of arms of House of Medici
The Grand Duke Ferdinando I.
Maria Maddalena, Cosimo II and Ferdinando II, painting after Justus Sustermans
The Grand Duke Cosimo III in old age
The Grand Duke Gian Gastone's coronation portrait; he was the last Medicean monarch of Tuscany
A doppelporträt of Francis Stephen and his wife Maria Theresa, by Peter Kobler von Ehrensorg
Silver coin: 10 paoli of Grand Duchy of Tuscana 1747, under Francis of House Lorraine
Coat of arms of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (Tuscany).
Grand Duke Leopold I with his children and wife, 1776
The Kingdom of Etruria, Tuscany's successor state during the Napoleonic Wars
Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany (r. 1824–1859) in the uniform of an Austrian Field Marshal, 1828, after Pietro Benvenuti
Map of Grand Duchy of Tuscany in 1815
Coat of arms (1562–1737)
Naval flag
Civil ensign
Imperial Banner of the HRE as state/naval flag (1749–1765)
State flag with Lesser Coat of arms (1815–1848, 1849–1860)
State flag with Great Coat of arms (1765–1800, 1815–1848, 1849–1860)<ref name="">Bandiere degli Stati italiani preunitari: Toscana.</ref>
Flag of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany (1848–1849)
Lesser Coat of arms (1815–1848, 1849–1860)
Great Coat of arms (1765–1800, 1815–1848, 1849–1860)<ref name=""/>
Naval flag (1737–1749)
Civil flag and civil ensign (1815–1848, 1849–1860)

The Grand Duchy was ruled by the House of Medici until the extinction of its senior branch in 1737.

Cosimo de' Medici

Portrait by Bronzino
The late medieval mark of the Medici Bank (Banco Medici), used for the authentication of documents. Florence, Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, Ms. Panciatichi 71, fol. 1r.
A 16th-century portrait of Contessina de' Bardi, Cosimo's wife, attributed to Cristofano dell'Altissimo.
Cosimo goes into exile, Palazzo Vecchio.
Portrait by Jacopo Pontormo; the laurel branch (il Broncone) was a symbol used also by his heirs
The floor tomb of Cosimo de' Medici in the Basilica of San Lorenzo, Florence
Donatello's David, a Medici commission.
Cosimo Pater patriae, Uffizi Gallery, Florence.

Cosimo di Giovanni de' Medici (27 September 1389 – 1 August 1464) was an Italian banker and politician who established the Medici family as effective rulers of Florence during much of the Italian Renaissance.

Pope Leo XI

Head of the Catholic Church and ruler of the Papal States from 1 April 1605 to his death.

Portrait engraving of Leo XI by Jacob Matham, 1605
Tomb of Leo XI in St. Peter's Basilica, by Alessandro Algardi

He was from the prominent House of Medici originating from Florence.

House of Borgia

Spanish-Aragonese noble family, which rose to prominence during the Italian Renaissance.

Painting by John Collier, "A glass of wine with Caesar Borgia", from left: Cesare Borgia, Lucrezia, Pope Alexander, and a young man holding an empty glass. The painting represents the popular view of the treacherous nature of the Borgias - the implication being that the young man cannot be sure that the wine is not poisoned.
Borja or Borgia genealogy tree
Coat of arms of the dukes of Gandía.
Coat of arms of Maria Enriquez de Luna widow of Pedro and Juan Borgia
Coat of arms of the dukes of Valentinois.
Coat of arms of Cesare Borgia as Duke of Romagna and Valentinois and Captain-General of the Church
Alfons de Borja Pope Callixtus III
Rodrigo Borja Pope Alexander VI, father of Cesare, Giovanni, Lucrezia and Gioffre.
Giovanni Borgia 2nd Duke of Gandia
Portrait of Gentleman, Cesare Borgia Duke of Valentinois
Lucrezia Borgia Duchess of Ferrara and Modena
Gioffre Borgia Prince of Squillace
Francisco Borgia Saint Francis Borgia, S.J., 4th Duke of Gandia
Juan Buenaventura de Borja, President of the Real Audiencia de Santa Fe de Bogotá
Gaspar de Borja y Velasco Cardinal, Primate of Spain, Archbishop of Seville, and Archbishop and Viceroy of Naples
Francisco de Borja y Aragón Prince of Squillace and Viceroy of Peru

Because of their grasping for power, they made enemies of the Medici, the Sforza, and the Dominican friar Girolamo Savonarola, among others.

Gian Gastone de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany

Portrait by Franz Ferdinand Richter
Gian Gastone as a young man after Niccolò Cassana, 1690
Gian Gastone before his accession (date and author unavailable)
Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici, Electress Palatine of the Rhine, Gian Gastone's sister, by Jan Frans van Douven
Charles of Spain by Jean Ranc, 1725
Francis III of Lorraine, Gian Gastone's successor, by Martin van Meytens, 1745

Gian Gastone de' Medici (Giovanni Battista Gastone; 24 May 1671 – 9 July 1737) was the seventh and last Medicean Grand Duke of Tuscany.

Niccolò Machiavelli

Italian diplomat, author, philosopher and historian who lived during the Renaissance.

Portrait of Machiavelli by Santi di Tito
Oil painting of Machiavelli by Cristofano dell'Altissimo
Machiavelli's tomb in the Santa Croce Church in Florence
Lorenzo di Piero de' Medici, to whom the final version of The Prince was dedicated
Engraved portrait of Machiavelli, from the Peace Palace Library's Il Principe, published in 1769
Xenophon, author of the Cyropedia
Statue at the Uffizi
Francis Bacon argued the case for what would become modern science which would be based more upon real experience and experimentation, free from assumptions about metaphysics, and aimed at increasing control of nature. He named Machiavelli as a predecessor.
John Adams admired Machiavelli's rational description of the realities of statecraft. Adams used Machiavelli's works to argue for mixed government.
Portrait of Gentleman (Cesare Borgia), used as an example of a successful ruler in The Prince
Peter Withorne's 1573 translation of The Art of War

He worked as secretary to the Second Chancery of the Republic of Florence from 1498 to 1512, when the Medici were out of power.


Historic region and valley in northern Tuscany, in Italy, corresponding to the course of the River Sieve.

Mugello within Metropolitan Florence
Countryside near Galliano di Mugello
A Mugello road lined with cypress trees
Dam across the Sieve at Lake Bilancino

Several patrician families of the area built villas here, such as those of the Medici including Villa Medicea di Cafaggiolo and Villa Medicea del Trebbio.


Italian sculptor, painter, architect and poet of the High Renaissance.

Portrait by Daniele da Volterra, c. undefined 1545
The Madonna of the Steps (1490–1492)
Pietà, St Peter's Basilica (1498–99)
The Statue of David, completed by Michelangelo in 1504, is one of the most renowned works of the Renaissance.
Tomb of Julius II, 1505–1545
Michelangelo painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel; the work took approximately four years to complete (1508–1512)
The Last Judgment (1534–1541)
The dome of St Peter's Basilica
Ignudo fresco from 1509 on the Sistine Chapel ceiling
Michelangelo, drawn from sight by Francisco de Holanda in the late 1530s.
The Punishment of Tityus, gift to Tommaso dei Cavalieri, c. 1532
The Sistine Chapel Ceiling (1508–1512)
Tomb of Michelangelo (1578) by Giorgio Vasari in the Basilica of Santa Croce, Florence.
The Taddei Tondo (1502)
Madonna and Child. Bruges, Belgium (1504)
The Doni Tondo (1504–1506)
Angel by Michelangelo, early work (1494–95)
Bacchus by Michelangelo, early work (1496–1497)
Dying Slave, Louvre (1513)
Atlas Slave (1530–1534)
The Drunkenness of Noah
The Deluge (detail)
The Creation of Adam (1510)
The First Day of Creation
Studies for The Libyan Sibyl
 The Libyan Sibyl (1511)
The Prophet Jeremiah (1511)
Battle of the Centaurs (1492)
Copy of the lost Battle of Cascina by Bastiano da Sangallo
The Last Judgment, detail of the Redeemed. (see whole image above)
The Crucifixion of St. Peter
The vestibule of the Laurentian Library has Mannerist features which challenge the Classical order of Brunelleschi's adjacent church.
Michelangelo's redesign of the ancient Capitoline Hill included a complex spiralling pavement with a star at its centre.
Michelangelo's design for St Peter's is both massive and contained, with the corners between the apsidal arms of the Greek Cross filled by square projections.
The exterior is surrounded by a giant order of pilasters supporting a continuous cornice. Four small cupolas cluster around the dome.
Design for a window in the Palazzo Farnese.
Second design for wall tomb of Pope Julius II
Self-portrait of the artist as Nicodemus
Statue of Victory (1534), Palazzo Vecchio, Florence
The Pietà of Vittoria Colonna (c. 1540)
The Rondanini Pietà (1552–1564)
The Doni Tondo (1504–1506)

Art was sponsored by the Signoria (the town council), the merchant guilds, and wealthy patrons such as the Medici and their banking associates.