Thursday, March 6, 2014

The skyline of Florence, the 94 metres tower of the Palazzo Vecchio

The Palazzo Vecchio or Palazzo della Signoria, austere and elegant, was commissioned as the headquarters for the Priory of the Arts. The earliest part dates back to 1299 and includes an old tower known as "Torre della Vacca"  which, according to Vasari, was the work of  Arnolfo di Cambio. It was enlarged many times over the years.

In 1495 the Salone dei Cinquecento with frescoes by Vasari was built by Cronaca under the guidance of the friar Girolamo Savonarola. Much of the interior was rebuilt by Vasari when, in 1540, Cosimo I de Medici moved into the palace. Especially worth visiting are the Sala dei Gigli with frescoes by Ghirlandaio, the portrait of  Eleonora di Toledo, grand duke's wife, and the study (studiolo) of  Francesco I de Medici created by Vasari.

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