A Snapshot From / Florence

A Historically Proud City

I keep expecting to tire of reading about Renaissance Florence, but thus far, that hasn’t happened. After writing my recent post on Renaissance reads, I was inspired to start the biography Leonardo: The Artist and the Man by Serge Bramly.

Just a couple of chapters in, Bramly sets the stage of Florence at the time when young Leonardo was to leave his home in Vinci for the workshop of Andrea del Verrocchio.

“In Leonardo’s youth,” Bramly writes, “Florence was a turntable of trade and one of the most enterprising, prosperous and lively cities in Italy.”

Citizens of Florence have a long history of civic pride, and the author names several examples to validate this feeling.

“The Florentines were proud of their city and readily said as much. They were proud of the stability of its currency (the florin, a coin stamped on one side with a lily, the city’s emblem, and on the other side with Saint John, the city’s patron saint);

its institutions; its republican government; its liberty;

BellottoSignoria.jpg

its language (Tuscan, from which Italian was to grow);

Michelangelo, Sonnet with a caricature.jpg

its past (Roman and Etruscan);

of the great men who brought the city fame (above all, Dante);

of the beauty of its monuments (especially the cathedral and baptistry).

20160719_060600.jpg

Most of all, they were proud of Florence’s ‘modernity.'”

File:'Florence, A View of the Piazza della Signoria with the Loggia dei Lanzi at Left' by Ippolito Caffi.jpg

“The Florentines were proud of their city and readily said as much. They were proud of the stability of its currency (the florin, a coin stamped on one side with a lily, the city’s emblem, and on the other side with Saint John, the city’s patron saint); its institutions; its republican government; its liberty; its language (Tuscan, from which Italian was to grow); its past (Roman and Etruscan); of the great men who brought the city fame (above all, Dante); of the beauty of its monuments (especially the cathedral and baptistry). Most of all, they were proud of Florence’s ‘modernity.'”

Leonardo: The Artist and the Man by Serge Bramly


Image Credits:

  • Photo 1 Gold Florin
  • Photo 2 Piazza della Signoria, seat of Florentine government
  • Photo 3 Sonnet by Michelangelo
  • Photo 4 Fiesole, once home to Etruscans and Romans
  • Photo 5 Dante by Bronzino circa 1530
  • Photo 6 Florence’s Cathedral and Baptistry (photo my own)
  • Photo 7 Loggia dei Lanzi

This post first appeared on Prayers and Piazzas.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “A Historically Proud City

Share your two centesimi:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s