Treasures of Florence: The Medici Collection 1400-1700
Treasures of Florence: The Medici Collection 1400-1700 reunites the most beautiful jewellery and ornaments in the Medici collection from the 15th to ... Show synopsis Treasures of Florence: The Medici Collection 1400-1700 reunites the most beautiful jewellery and ornaments in the Medici collection from the 15th to 18th centuries. Although today these objects are distributed among several Florentine museums, they are presented here together. The book divides the fascinating history of the Medici family into a series of chapters each devoted to a major patron within the dynasty. These chapters provide a detailed history and description of the objects and their makers and the reasons they were commissioned or purchased. Vivid color photography, much of it especially commissioned, faithfully conveys the opulent beauty of this magnificent collection. Originally bankers and merchants, the Medicis became identified as supporters of the workers and artisans of Florence in the late 14th century. Early in the 15th century the family began 300 years of almost uninterrupted control as popular leaders of the city. After his death in 1464, Cosimo, the first of the ruling Medicis, was given the title Pater Patriae (the father of his country) by his people. It was his grandson Lorenzo (the Magnificent) who patronised Botticelli, da Vinci, and Michelangelo. The focus of the Medicis' collection was jewellery, gems, cameos, ornaments and exotic objects. It also included antique vases made using the pietra-dura technique, whose value was increased through elaborate borders made of gold, silver or enamel. Many were collected by Lorenzo il Magnifico. Treasures of Florence boasts a rich variety, from the works of Benvenuto Cellini, through Baroque art, to exotic pieces from Asia, Mexico, and India. The final chapter examines the exquisite jewels which belonged to theElector Anna Maria Ludovica, the last ruler of the Medici dynasty.