Florence is known for being one of the most beautiful and historical cities in the world. The artwork and architecture to be found there is second to none. Following are a few of the historical places to visit in Florence.
Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore (Basilica of Saint Mary of the Flower)
The Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore is the main church in the city of Florence. It’s construction was started in 1296 and completed in 1436. However the decoration of the outside of the catherdral was not completed until over 400 years later. The dome of the church is the largest dome made of brick ever created. The church is also known for the 44 stained glass windows it contains, which was the largest such undertaking at the time of their creation and are the work of famed artists such as Donatello.
Fountain of Neptune
The Fountain of Neptune is located in the Piazza della Signoria and was commissioned to honor the wedding of Francesco I de’ Medici and Johanna of Austria. Whiel it is now considered a great work of art, at the time of its completion, it was not considered so by the people of Florence. Over the course of time, the statue has been damaged and has been the subject of nurmerous restorations.
Basilica of San Lorenzo
The Basilica di San Lorenzo was one of the largest churches in Florence and is the burial location for all of the prominent members of the Medici family. Although the Basilica was considered to be complete in 1459 in anticipation of a visit from Pope Pius II, portions continued to be under construction for over 30 more years. It was also the parish church of the Medici family, who helped to finance the construction.
The Uffizi Gallery is an art museum located in Florence and is one of the oldest musuems in the Western world as well as one of Florence’s most popular tourist attractions. Construction on the building, the Palazzo degli Uffizi, began in 1560 as offices for the magistrates of Florence and was completed in 1581. Cosimo I de’ Medici designed a project that would bring a selection of masterpiece works of art to the Palazzo and over the years it became a location for the display of art that was either collected or commissioned by the Medici family. This artwork was later given to the Uffizi by the last heiress of the Medici family, which became one of the first modern museums. The Uffizi Gallery has been open to visitors by request since the 1500s, but was not officially opened to the public until 1765. The Uffizi Gallery contains works by such notable artists as Sandro Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci, and Raphael, among others.
Want to learn more? Simply search “Florence” in your library’s catalog to find out more!