The HOUSE OF MEDICI (/ˈmɛdᵻtʃi/ MED-i-chee ; Italian
pronunciation: ) was an Italian banking family, political dynasty and
later royal house that first began to gather prominence under Cosimo
Medici in the Republic of
Florence during the first half of the
15th century. The family originated in the
Mugello region of the
Tuscan countryside, gradually rising until they were able to fund the
Medici Bank . The bank was the largest in
Europe during the 15th
century, seeing the
Medici gain political power in
Florence — though
officially they remained citizens rather than monarchs.
Medici produced three Popes of the
Catholic Church —
Pope Leo X
Clement VII (1523–1534), and
Pope Leo XI (1605);
two regent queens of France—Catherine de\'
Medici (1547–1559) and
Medici (1600–1610). In 1531, the family became hereditary
Florence . In 1569, the duchy was elevated to a grand duchy
after territorial expansion. They ruled the Grand
Duchy of Tuscany
from its inception until 1737, with the death of Gian Gastone de\'
Medici . The grand duchy witnessed degrees of economic growth under
the earlier grand dukes, but by the time of Cosimo III de\'
Tuscany was fiscally bankrupt.
Their wealth and influence initially derived from the textile trade
guided by the guild of the
Arte della Lana . Like other families
ruling in Italian signorie , the Medicis dominated their city's
government , were able to bring
Florence under their family's power,
and created an environment where art and humanism could flourish.
They, along with other families of Italy—such as the Visconti and
Milan , the Este of
Ferrara , and the Gonzaga of Mantua
—fostered and inspired the birth of the
Italian Renaissance .
Medici Bank was one of the most prosperous and most respected
institutions in Europe. There are some estimates that the Medici
family were the wealthiest family in
Europe for a time. From this
base, they acquired political power initially in
Florence and later in
Italy and Europe. A notable contribution to the profession of
accounting was the improvement of the general ledger system through
the development of the double-entry bookkeeping system for tracking
credits and debits . The
Medici family were among the earliest
businesses to use the system.
* 1 History
* 1.1 Origins
* 1.2 Rise to power
* 1.3 15th century
* 1.4 16th century
* 1.5 17th century
* 1.6 18th century: the fall of the dynasty
* 2 Legacy
* 3 Main genealogical table
* 4 Titles
* 4.1 List of heads of the
* 4.1.1 Signore in the Republic of
* 4.1.2 Dukes of
* 4.1.3 Grand Dukes of
* 5 Coats of Arms
* 6 See also
* 7 Notes
* 8 References
* 9 Further reading
* 10 External links
Medici family came from the agricultural
Mugello region , north
of Florence, being mentioned for the first time in a document of 1230
. The origin of the name is uncertain.
Medici is the plural of medico,
meaning "medical doctor". It has been suggested that the name derived
from one Medico di Potrone, a castellan of Potrone in the late 11th
century, who presumably was the family's ancestor.
The dynasty began with the founding of the
RISE TO POWER
Giovanni di Bicci de\'
Medici , founder of the
The Confirmation of the Rule, by
Until the late 14th century, prior to the Medici, the leading family
Florence was the
House of Albizzi . In 1293 the Ordinances of
Justice were enacted, which effectively became the constitution of the
Florence throughout the Italian Renaissance. The city's
numerous luxurious palazzi were becoming surrounded by townhouses ,
built by the ever prospering merchant class. In 1298, one of the
leading banking families of Europe, the Bonsignoris, were bankrupted,
so the city of
Siena lost her status as the banking center of Europe
The main challengers to the
Albizzi family were the Medicis , first
under Giovanni de\'
Medici , later under his son Cosimo di Giovanni
Medici and great-grandson, Lorenzo de' Medici. The Medici
Medici bank—then Europe's largest bank—and an array
of other enterprises in
Florence and elsewhere. In 1433, the Albizzi
managed to have Cosimo exiled. The next year, however, a pro-Medici
Signoria was elected and Cosimo returned. The
Medici became the city's
leading family, a position they would hold for the next three
Florence remained a republic until 1537, traditionally
marking the end of the High Renaissance in Florence, but the
instruments of republican government were firmly under the control of
Medici and their allies, save during intervals after 1494 and
1527. Cosimo and Lorenzo rarely held official posts but were the
Medici family was connected to most other elite families of the
time through marriages of convenience , partnerships, or employment,
so the family had a central position in the social network : several
families had systematic access to the rest of the elite families only
through the Medici, perhaps similar to banking relationships. Some
examples of these families include the Bardi , Salviati, Cavalcanti,
and the Tornabuoni. This has been suggested as a reason for the rise
Members of the family rose to some prominence in the early 14th
century in the wool trade, especially with
Spain . Despite
the presence of some
Medici in the city's government institutions ,
they were still far less notable than other outstanding families such
Albizzi or the
Strozzi . One Salvestro de\'
Medici was speaker
of the woolmakers ' guild during the
Ciompi revolt, and one Antonio
was exiled from
Florence in 1396. The involvement in another plot in
1400 caused all branches of the family to be banned from Florentine
politics for twenty years, with the exception of two; one of those,
Medici (1320–1363), originated the
Averardo's son, Giovanni di Bicci de\'
Medici (c. 1360–1429),
increased the wealth of the family through his creation of the Medici
Bank, and became one of the richest men in the city of Florence.
Although he never held any political charge, he gained strong popular
support for the family through his support for the introduction of a
proportional taxing system. Giovanni's son Cosimo the Elder , Pater
Patriae, took over in 1434 as gran maestro , and the
unofficial heads of state of the Florentine republic. Cosimo
Three successive generations of the
Medici — Cosimo, Piero, and
Lorenzo — ruled over
Florence through the greater part of the 15th
century, without altogether abolishing representative government but
clearly dominating it. These three members of the
Medici family had
great skills in the management of so "restive and independent a city"
as Florence. When Lorenzo died in 1492, however, his son Piero proved
quite incapable, and within two years he and his supporters were
forced into exile and were replaced with a republican government.
Medici (1416–1469), Cosimo's son, stayed in power for
only five years (1464–1469). He was called "Piero the Gouty" because
of the gout that afflicted his foot and eventually led to his death.
Unlike his father, Piero had little interest in the arts. Due to his
illness, he mostly stayed at home bedridden, and therefore did little
to further the
Medici control of
Florence while in power. As such,
Medici rule stagnated until the next generation, when Piero's son
Lorenzo took over.
Medici (1449–1492), called "the Magnificent", was more
capable of leading and ruling a city, but he neglected the family
banking business, leading to its ultimate ruin. To ensure the
continuance of his family's success, Lorenzo planned his children's
future careers for them. He groomed the headstrong Piero II to follow
as his successor in civil leadership; Giovanni (future
Leo X )
was placed in the church at an early age; and his daughter Maddalena
was provided with a sumptuous dowry to make a politically advantageous
marriage to a son of
Pope Innocent VIII .
There was a conspiracy in 1478 to depose the family by killing
Lorenzo with his younger brother Giuliano during Easter services; the
assassination attempt ended with the death of Giuliano and an injured
Lorenzo. The conspiracy involved the
Pazzi and Salviati families, who
were both rival banking families seeking to end the
as well as the priest presiding over the church services, the
Pisa , and even
Pope Sixtus IV to a degree. The
conspirators approached Sixtus IV in the hopes of gaining his
approval, as he and the
Medici had a long rivalry themselves, but the
pope gave no official sanction to the plan. Despite his refusal of
official approval, the pope nonetheless allowed the plot to proceed
without interfering, and, after the failed assassination of Lorenzo,
also gave dispensation for crimes done in the service of the church.
After this, Lorenzo adopted his brother's illegitimate son, Giulio de'
Medici (1478–1535), the future
Clement VII . Unfortunately, all of
Lorenzo's careful planning fell apart to some degree under his
incompetent son, Piero II, who took over as the head of
his father's death. Piero was responsible for the expulsion of the
Medici from 1494–1512.
Medici additionally benefited from the discovery of vast deposits
of alum in Tolfa.
Alum is essential as a mordant in the dyeing of
certain cloths and was used extensively in Florence, where the main
industry was textile manufacturing. However, the Turks were the only
exporters of alum, so
Europe was forced to buy from them until the
discovery in the Italian town of Tolfa. Pius II granted the Medici
family a monopoly on the mining there, making them the primary
Alum in Europe. In the dangerous circumstances in which
our city is placed, the time for deliberation is past. Action must be
taken... I have decided, with your approval, to sail for Naples
immediately, believing that as I am the person against whom the
activities of our enemies are chiefly directed, I may, perhaps, by
delivering myself into their hands, be the means of restoring peace to
our fellow-citizens. As I have had more honour and responsibility
among you than any private citizen has had in our day, I am more bound
than any other person to serve our country, even at the risk of my
life. With this intention I now go. Perhaps God wills that this war,
which began in the blood of my brother and of myself, should be ended
by any means. My desire is that by my life or my death, my misfortune
or my prosperity, I may contribute to the welfare of our city... I go
full of hope, praying to God to give me grace to perform what every
citizen should at all times be ready to perform for his country.
Lorenzo de' Medici, 1479.
The exile of the
Medici lasted until 1512, and the "senior" branch of
the family — those descended from Cosimo the Elder — were then
able to rule on and off until the assassination of Alessandro de\'
Medici , first Duke of
Florence , in 1537. This century-long rule was
only interrupted on two occasions (between 1494–1512 and
1527–1530), when popular revolts sent the
Medici into exile. Power
then passed to the "junior"
Medici branch — those descended from
Lorenzo the Elder , younger son of Giovanni di Bicci, starting with
his great-great-grandson Cosimo I the Great . The Medici's rise to
power was chronicled in detail by
Benedetto Dei . Cosimo and his
father started the
Medici foundations in banking, manufacturing –
including a form of franchises – wealth, art, cultural patronage,
and in the Papacy that ensured their success for generations. At least
half, probably more, of Florence's people were employed by them and
their foundational branches in business. The
Tapestry of 1589 Cosimo I the Great , founder of the Grand
Medici remained masters of
Italy through their two
famous 16th century popes,
Leo X and
Clement VII , who were de facto
rulers of both Rome and Florence. They were both patrons of the arts,
but in the religious field they proved unable to stem the advance of
Martin Luther 's ideas.
Clement VII was the pope during the sack of
Rome by Charles V , and later was forced to crown him. Clement
frequently changed his alliances between the Empire and France, which
eventually led him to marry off his first cousin, twice removed,
Medici , to the son of Francis I of
France , the future
Henry II . This led to the
Medici blood being transferred, through
Catherine's daughters, to the royal family of
Spain through Elisabeth
of Valois , and the
House of Lorraine through
Claude of Valois
Claude of Valois .
The most outstanding figure of the 16th century
Medici was Cosimo I,
who, coming from relatively modest beginnings in the Mugello , rose to
supremacy in the whole of
Tuscany , conquering the Florentines' most
Siena and founding the Grand
Duchy of Tuscany. Cosimo
purchased a portion of the island of
Elba from the Republic of Genoa
and based the Tuscan navy there. He died in 1574, succeeded by his
eldest surviving son Francesco , whose inability to produce male heirs
led to the succession of his younger brother, Ferdinando , upon his
death in 1587. Francesco married Johanna of
Austria , and with his
consort produced Eleonora de\'
Medici , Duchess of Mantua, and Marie
Medici , Queen of
France and of Navarre. Through Marie, all
succeeding French monarchs (bar the Napoleons ) are descended from
Ferdinando eagerly assumed the government of Tuscany. He commanded
the draining of the Tuscan marshlands, built a road network in
Tuscany and cultivated trade in Leghorn . To augment the
Tuscan silk industry, he oversaw the planting of Mulberry trees along
the major roads (silk worms feed on Mulberry leaves). He shifted
Tuscany away from Habsburg hegemony by marrying the first
non-Habsburg candidate since Alessandro,
Christina of Lorraine , a
granddaughter of Catherine de' Medici. The Spanish reaction was to
construct a citadel on their portion of the island of Elba. To
strengthen the new Franco-Tuscan alliance, he married his niece,
Marie, to Henry IV of
France . Henry explicitly stated that he would
Tuscany from Spanish aggression, but later reneged, after which
Ferdinando was forced to marry his heir, Cosimo, to Maria Maddalena of
Austria to assuage
Spain (where Maria Maddalena's sister was the
incumbent Queen consort). Ferdinando sponsored a Tuscan expedition to
New World with the intention of establishing a Tuscan colony.
Despite all of these incentives to economic growth and prosperity, the
Florence at the dawn of the 17th century was a mere
75,000, far smaller than the other capitals of Italy: Rome, Milan,
Venice, Palermo and Naples. Francesco and Ferdinando, due to lax
Medici and Tuscan state property, are thought to
have been wealthier than their ancestor, Cosimo de' Medici, the
founder of the dynasty. The Grand Duke alone had the prerogative to
exploit the state's mineral and salt resources, and the fortunes of
Medici were directly tied to the Tuscan economy.
From left to right: The Grand Duchess Maria Maddalena , The
Grand Duke Cosimo II , and their elder son, the future Ferdinando II
Ferdinando, although no longer a cardinal, exercised much influence
at successive conclaves. In 1605, Ferdinando succeeded in getting his
candidate, Alessandro de' Medici, elected
Pope Leo XI . He died the
same month, but his successor,
Pope Paul V , was also pro-Medici.
Ferdinando's pro-Papal foreign policy, however, had drawbacks. Tuscany
was overrun with religious orders, not all of whom were obliged to pay
taxes. Ferdinando died in 1609, leaving an affluent realm; his
inaction in international affairs, however, would have long-reaching
consequences down the line.
Marie de' Medici was acting as regent for her son, Louis
XIII . Louis repudiated her pro-Habsburg policy in 1617. She lived the
rest of her life deprived of any political influence.
Ferdinando's successor, Cosimo II , reigned for less than 12 years.
He married Maria Maddalena of Austria, with whom he had his eight
children, including Margherita de\'
Medici , Ferdinando II de\' Medici
, and an Anna de\'
Medici . He is most remembered as the patron of
Galileo Galilei , whose 1610 treatise,
Sidereus Nuncius ,
was dedicated to him. Cosimo died of consumption (tuberculosis ) in
Cosimo's elder son, Ferdinando, was not yet of legal maturity to
succeed him, thus Maria Maddalena and his grandmother, Christina of
Lorraine, acted as regents. Their collective regency is known as the
Turtici. Maria Maddelana's temperament was analogous to Christina's,
and together they aligned
Tuscany with the Papacy , re-doubled the
Tuscan clergy, and allowed the heresy trial of
Galileo Galilei to
occur. Upon the death of the last
Duke of Urbino
Duke of Urbino (Francesco Maria
II), instead of claiming the duchy for Ferdinando, who was married to
the Duke of Urbino's granddaughter and heiress, Vittoria della Rovere
, they permitted it to be annexed by
Pope Urban VIII . In 1626, they
banned any Tuscan subject from being educated outside the Grand Duchy,
a law later overturned but resurrected by Maria Maddalena's grandson,
Cosimo III .
Harold Acton , an Anglo-Italian historian, ascribes the
Tuscany to the Turtici regency.
Grand Duke Ferdinado was obsessed with new technology, and had a
variety of hygrometers, barometers, thermometers, and telescopes
installed in the
Palazzo Pitti . In 1657, Leopoldo de\'
Medici , the
Grand Duke’s youngest brother, established the Accademia del Cimento
, organized to attract scientists to
Florence from all over Tuscany
for mutual study.
Tuscany participated in the
Wars of Castro (the last time Medicean
Tuscany proper was involved in a conflict) and inflicted a defeat on
the forces of
Pope Urban VIII in 1643. The war effort was costly and
the treasury so empty because of it that when the Castro mercenaries
were paid for, the state could no longer afford to pay interest on
government bonds, with the result that the interest rate was lowered
by 0.75%. At that time, the economy was so decrepit that barter trade
became prevalent in rural market places.
Ferdinando died on 23 May 1670 afflicted by apoplexy and dropsy . He
was interred in the Basilica of San Lorenzo , the Medici's necropolis.
At the time of his death, the population of the grand duchy was
730,594; the streets were lined with grass and the buildings on the
verge of collapse in
Ferdinando's marriage to Vittoria della Rovere produced two children:
Cosimo III de' Medici, Grand Duke of
Tuscany and Francesco Maria de\'
Medici, Duke of Rovere and
Montefeltro . Upon Vittoria's death in
1694, her allodial possessions, the Duchies of Rovere and Montefeltro
, passed to her younger son.
18TH CENTURY: THE FALL OF THE DYNASTY
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
Medici (English: Minerva, Mercury and Pluto pay homage to the
Electress Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici) after
Antonio Bellucci , 1706
Cosimo III married Marguerite Louise d\'Orléans , a granddaughter of
Henry IV of
France and Marie de' Medici. An exceedingly discontented
pairing, this union produced three children, notably Anna Maria Luisa
de\' Medici, Electress Palatine and the last Medicean Grand Duke of
Tuscany, Gian Gastone de\'
Johann Wilhelm, Elector Palatine , Anna Maria Luisa's spouse,
successfully requisitioned the dignity
Royal Highness for the Grand
Duke and his family in 1691, despite the fact that they had no claim
to any kingdom. Cosimo frequently paid the Holy Roman Emperor, his
nominal feudal overlord, exorbitant dues; and he sent munitions to
the Emperor during the
Battle of Vienna
Battle of Vienna .
Medici lacked male heirs, and in 1705, the grand ducal treasury
was virtually bankrupt. The population of
Florence declined by 50%;
the population of the grand duchy as a whole declined by an estimated
40%. Cosimo desperately tried to reach a settlement with the European
powers, but Tuscany’s legal status was very complicated: the area of
the grand duchy formerly comprising the Republic of
technically a Spanish fief, while the territory of the old Republic of
Florence was thought to be under imperial suzerainty . Upon the death
of his first son, Cosimo contemplated restoring the Florentine
republic, either upon Anna Maria Luisa's death, or on his own, if he
predeceased her. The restoration of the republic would entail
Siena to the Holy Roman Empire, but, regardless, it was
vehemently endorsed by his government.
Europe largely ignored
Cosimo’s plan, only Great Britain and the
Dutch Republic gave any
credence to it, and the plan ultimately died with Cosimo III in 1723.
On 4 April 1718, Great Britain,
France and the
Dutch Republic (and
later Austria) selected Don Carlos of
Spain , the elder child of
Elisabeth Farnese and Philip V of
Spain , as the Tuscan heir. By 1722,
the Electress was not even acknowledged as heiress, and Cosimo was
reduced to spectator at the conferences for Tuscany's future. On 25
October 1723, six days before his death, Grand Duke Cosimo
disseminated a final proclamation commanding that
independent: Anna Maria Luisa would succeed uninhibited to Tuscany
after Gian Gastone, and the Grand Duke reserved the right to choose
his successor. However, these portions of his proclamation were
completely ignored and he died a few days later.
Gian Gastone despised the Electress for engineering his catastrophic
Anna Maria Franziska of Saxe-Lauenburg ; while she
abhorred her brother's liberal policies, he repealed all of his
father's anti-Semitic statutes. Gian Gastone revelled in upsetting
her. On 25 October 1731, a Spanish detachment occupied
behalf of Don Carlos, who disembarked in
Tuscany in December of the
same year. The Ruspanti, Gian Gastone's decrepit entourage, loathed
the Electress, and she them. Duchess Violante , Gian Gastone's
sister-in-law, tried to withdraw the Grand Duke from the Ruspanti
sphere of influence by organising banquets. His conduct at the
banquets was less than regal, he often vomited repeatedly into his
napkin, belched, and regaled those present with socially inappropriate
jokes. Following a sprained ankle in 1731, he remained confined to
his bed for the rest of his life. The bed, oft smelling of faeces ,
was occasionally cleaned by Violante.
In 1736, following the
War of the Polish Succession
War of the Polish Succession , Don Carlos was
disbarred from Tuscany, and Francis III of Lorraine was made heir in
his stead. In January 1737, the Spanish troops withdrew from Tuscany,
and were replaced by Austrians.
Gian Gastone died on 9 July 1737, surrounded by prelates and his
sister. Anna Maria Luisa was offered a nominal regency by the Prince
de Craon until the new Grand Duke could peregrinate to Tuscany, but
declined. Upon her brother's death, she received all the House of
Medici's allodial possessions.
Anna Maria Luisa signed the Patto di Famiglia on 31 October 1737. In
collaboration with the Holy Roman Emperor and Grand Duke Francis of
Lorraine, she willed all the personal property of the
Medici to the
Tuscan state, provided that nothing was ever removed from Florence.
The "Lorrainers", as the occupying forces were called, were popularly
loathed, but the Regent, the Prince de Craon, allowed the Electress to
live unperturbed in the Pitti . She occupied herself with financing,
and with overseeing the construction of the Basilica of San Lorenzo ,
started in 1604 by Ferdinando I de\' Medici, Grand Duke of
costing the state 1,000 crowns per week.
She donated much of her fortune to charity: £4,000 a month. On 19
February 1743, the Dowager Electress Palatine Anna Maria Luisa de'
Medici died, and the Grand Ducal line of the House of
Medici died with
her. The Florentines grieved her, and she was interred in the crypt
that she helped to complete, San Lorenzo.
The extinction of the main
Medici dynasty and the accession in 1737
of Francis Stephen , Duke of Lorraine and husband of Maria Theresa of
Austria , led to Tuscany's temporary inclusion in the territories of
the Austrian crown. The line of the principi di Ottajano, an extant
branch of the House of
Medici who were eligible to inherit the grand
Tuscany when the last male of the senior branch died in 1737,
could have carried on as
Medici sovereigns but for the intervention of
Europe's major powers, which allocated the sovereignty of Florence
As a consequence, the
Duchy expired and the territory became a
secundogeniture of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty. The first Grand Duke
of the new dynasty, Francis I, was a great-great-great-grandson of
Francesco I de' Medici, thus continuing the Medicean
Dynasty on the
Tuscany through the female line. The Habsburgs were deposed
for the Bourbon-Parma in 1801 (themselves deposed in 1807), and
restored at the
Congress of Vienna
Congress of Vienna .
Tuscany became a province of the
United Kingdom of
Italy in 1861. However, several extant branches of
the House of
Medici currently continue to exist including the Princes
of Ottajano , the
Medici Tornaquinci, and the Verona
Medici Counts of
Caprara and Gavardo.
The family of Piero de\'
Medici portrayed by Sandro Botticelli
Madonna del Magnificat .
The biggest accomplishments of the
Medici were in the sponsorship of
art and architecture , mainly early and High Renaissance art and
Medici were responsible for the majority of
Florentine art during their reign. Their money was significant because
during this period, artists generally only made their works when they
received commissions in advance. Giovanni di Bicci de' Medici, the
first patron of the arts in the family, aided
commissioned Brunelleschi for the reconstruction of the Basilica of
Florence in 1419. Cosimo the Elder's notable artistic
Fra Angelico . The most significant
addition to the list over the years was
(1475–1564), who produced work for a number of Medici, beginning
with Lorenzo the Magnificent, who was said to be extremely fond of the
young Michelangelo, inviting him to study the family collection of
antique sculpture. Lorenzo also served as patron to Leonardo da Vinci
(1452–1519) for seven years. Indeed, Lorenzo was an artist in his
own right, and author of poetry and song; his support of the arts and
letters is seen as a high point in
Medici patronage. 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.
After Lorenzo's death the puritanical Dominican friar, Girolamo
Savonarola rose to prominence, warning Florentines against excessive
luxury. Under Savonarola's fanatical leadership, many great works were
"voluntarily" destroyed in the
Bonfire of the Vanities (February 7,
1497). The following year, on May 23, 1498, Savonarola and two young
supporters were burned at the stake in the Piazza della Signoria, the
same location as his bonfire. In addition to commissions for art and
Medici were prolific collectors and today their
acquisitions form the core of the
Uffizi museum in Florence. In
Medici are responsible for some notable features of
Florence; including the
Uffizi Gallery , the
Boboli Gardens , the
Belvedere , the
Medici Chapel and the
Later, in Rome, the
Medici Popes continued in the family tradition of
patronizing artists in Rome.
Leo X would chiefly commission works
Clement VII commissioned
Michelangelo to paint the
altar wall of the
Sistine Chapel just before the pontiff's death in
Eleanor of Toledo , princess of
Spain and wife of Cosimo I the
Great, purchased the Pitti Palace from
Buonaccorso Pitti in 1550.
Cosimo in turn patronized Vasari who erected the
Uffizi Gallery in
1560 and founded the
Accademia delle Arti del Disegno – ("Academy of
the Arts of Drawing") in 1563. Marie de\'
Medici , widow of Henry IV
France and mother of Louis XIII , is the subject of a commissioned
cycle of paintings known as the Marie de\'
Medici cycle , painted for
Luxembourg Palace by court painter
Peter Paul Rubens
Peter Paul Rubens in 1622–23.
Although none of the
Medici themselves were scientists, the family is
well known to have been the patrons of the famous
Galileo Galilei ,
who tutored multiple generations of
Medici children, and was an
important figurehead for his patron's quest for power. Galileo's
patronage was eventually abandoned by Ferdinando II , when the
Inquisition accused Galileo of heresy. However, the
Medici family did
afford the scientist a safe haven for many years. Galileo named the
four largest moons of
Jupiter after four
Medici children he tutored,
although the names Galileo used are not the names currently used.
MAIN GENEALOGICAL TABLE
See also: Genealogical tables of the House of
Medici Part of this
section is transcluded from Genealogical tables of the House of Medici
. (edit history )
The table below shows the origins of the Medici:
MEDICO DI POTRONE
*1046 ? †1102
*1069 ? †1123
*1099 ? †1147
GIAMBUONO DE\\' MEDICI
*1131 ? †1192
*1167 ? †1210
*? †1290 UGOLINO
*? †1348 BONINO
*? †~1356 ALAMANNO
*? †1355 BERNARDO
fl. 1306 GIOVENCO
fl. 1330 SALVESTRO
*? †1346 GUCCIO
*1323 †1395 SALVESTRO
*1331 ? †1388 Bernardo
*? †1377 CONTE DI AVERARDO
Salvestro di Averardo
Vieri di Cambio
Salvestro di Alemanno
Francesco di Giovenco
*1393 †1465? GIULIANO
*? †? PIETRO
*? †? GIOVANNI
*? †1475? Castellina Tornaquinci
fl. 1493 DOMENICO
*? †? AVERARDO
fl. 1490 GIOVENCO
*? †? BERNARDO
*? †? GIOVANNI
*? †? RAFFAELE
*? †1528 FRANCESCO
*? †? OTTAVIANO
* †1562 LORENZO
*? †? LEONE
*? †1624 NICOLò
*? †1650 AVERARDO
*? †1685 GIULIO
*? †1749 FRANCESCO
*? †1722 PIERPAOLO
fl. 1737 FRANCESCO
*? †1766 NICOLò GIUSEPPE
fl. 1759 AVERARDO
*? †1808 FILIPPO
*? †1821 NICOLA
*? †? ANNA MARIA LUISA
BINDO SIMONE PERUZZI
*1729 †1794 PIERPAOLO
This extract shows the branch that gave rise to the celebrated branch
Medici descending from Giovanni "di Bicci", who founded the
This shows the main branch of Cosimo, who founded the political
supremacy of the
Medici in Florence:
This is the branch of Cosimo's brother, Lorenzo, which gave rise to
the Grand-Dukes of Florence:
This is the line of the Grand-Dukes of Florence, descending from
Cosimo's brother Lorenzo, called the "Popolano" Branch:
LIST OF HEADS OF THE MEDICI
Signore In The Republic Of Florence
RELATIONSHIP WITH PREDECESSOR
(Pater Patriae) 1434
1 August 1464
Son of Giovanni di Bicci de\'
Medici who was not as prominently
involved in Florentine politics, rather more involved in the financial
Piero I de\'
(Piero the Gouty) 1 August 1464
2 December 1469
Eldest son of Cosimo de' Medici.
Lorenzo I de\'
(Lorenzo the Magnificent) 2 December 1469
9 April 1492
Eldest son of Piero I de' Medici.
Piero II de\'
(Piero the Unfortunate) 9 April 1492
8 November 1494
Eldest son of Lorenzo the Magnificent. Overthrown when Charles VIII
France invaded as a full republic was restored, first under the
Girolamo Savonarola and then statesman
Piero Soderini .
Cardinal Giovanni de\'
31 August 1512
9 March 1513
Brother of Piero the Unfortunate, second son of Lorenzo the
Magnificent. Elected to the Papacy, becoming
Pope Leo X.
Giuliano de\' Medici,
Duke of Nemours
9 March 1513
17 March 1516
Brother of Cardinal Giovanni de' Medici, third son of Lorenzo the
Lorenzo II de\' Medici,
Duke of Urbino
Duke of Urbino
17 March 1516
4 May 1519
Nephew of Giuliano de' Medici, Duke of Nemours, son of Piero the
Unfortunate. Father of Catherine de\'
Queen consort of
Cardinal Giulio de\'
4 May 1519
19 November 1523
Cousin of Lorenzo II de' Medici, Duke of Urbino, son of Giuliano
Medici who was the brother of Lorenzo the Magnificent. Elected to
the Papacy, becoming
Clement VII .
Cardinal Ippolito de\'
19 November 1523
24 October 1529
Cousin of Cardinal Giulio de' Medici, illegitimate son of Giuliano
de' Medici, Duke of Nemours.
Dukes Of Florence
RELATIONSHIP WITH PREDECESSOR
Alessandro il Moro
24 October 1529
6 January 1537
Cousin of Cardinal Ippolito de' Medici, illegitimate son of Lorenzo
II de' Medici,
Duke of Urbino
Duke of Urbino or
Pope Clement VII. Acting signore
during imperial Siege of
Florence , made Duke in 1531.
6 January 1537
21 April 1574
Distant cousin of Alessandro de' Medici, Son of Giovanni dalle
Bande Nere . dei Popolani line descended from
Lorenzo the Elder ,
Brother of Cosimo de' Medici; also great-grandson of Lorenzo the
Magnificent through his mother, Maria Salviati, and his grandmother,
Lucrezia de' Medici. 1569, he was made Grand Duke of Tuscany.
Grand Dukes Of Tuscany
RELATIONSHIP WITH PREDECESSOR
6 January 1569
21 April 1574
21 April 1574
17 October 1587
Eldest son of Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
17 October 1587
17 February 1609
Brother of Francesco I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, son of
Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
17 February 1609
28 February 1621
Eldest son of Ferdinando I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
28 February 1621
23 May 1670
Eldest son of Cosimo II de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
23 May 1670
31 October 1723
Eldest son of Ferdinando II de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
31 October 1723
9 July 1737
Second son of Cosimo III de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
COATS OF ARMS
Old coat of arms of the
Medici used by Giovanni di Bicci and Cosimo
The intermediate coat of arms of the Medici, Or, six balls in orle
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.
Great coat of arms of
Medici of Ottajano
Augmented Arms of
Wikimedia Commons has media related to HOUSE OF MEDICI .
* Book: Medici, a family
* Genealogical tables of the House of
Medici family tree
* List of popes from the
* Category:Coats of arms of the House of Medici
Motto adopted by Cosimo de\'
* ^ "
Medici Family – - Encyclopædia Britannica". Encyclopædia
Britannica . Retrieved 27 September 2009.
* ^ Silvia Malaguzzi, Botticelli. Artist\'s life, Giunti Editore,
Florence (Italy) 2004, p. 33.
* ^ The Medieval World –
Europe 1100–1350 by Friedrich Heer,
* ^ The name in Italian is pronounced with the stress on the first
syllable /ˈmɛ .di.tʃi/ and not on the second vowel.How to say:
BBC News Magazine Monitor . In American English, MED-uh-chee.
* ^ Kenneth Bartlett, The Italian Renaissance, Chapter 7, p.37,
Volume II, 2005.
* ^ "History of Florence". Aboutflorence.com. Retrieved 2015-01-26.
* ^ Strathern, p 18
* ^ Crum, Roger J. Severing the Neck of Pride: Donatello's "Judith
and Holofernes" and the Recollection of
Albizzi Shame in Medicean
Florence . Artibus et Historiae, Volume 22, Edit 44, 2001. pp.
* ^ Padgett, John F.; Ansell, Christopher K. (May 1993). "Robust
Action and the Rise of the Medici, 1400–1434". The American Journal
of Sociology. 98 (6): 1259–1319.
JSTOR 2781822 . doi :10.1086/230190
. . This has led to much more analysis.
* ^ Machiavelli, Niccolò (1906). The Florentine history written by
Niccolò Machiavelli, Volume 1. p. 221. .
* ^ Bradley, Richard (executive producer) (2003). The Medici:
Godfathers of the Renaissance (Part I) (
DVD ). PBS Home Video.
* ^ A B
Niccolò Machiavelli . A Norton Critical
Edition. Translated and edited by Rober M. Adams. New York. W.W.
Norton and Company, 1977. p. viii (Historical Introduction).
* ^ 15th century Italy.
* ^ Hibbard, pp. 177, 202, 162.
* ^ Hibbert, The House of Medici: Its Rise and Fall, 153.
* ^ A B Hale, p. 150.
* ^ Hale, p. 151.
Spain were ruled by the House of Habsburg; the two
are interchangeable terms for the Habsburg domains in the time period
* ^ Hale, p. 158.
* ^ A B Hale, p. 160.
* ^ Hale, p. 165.
* ^ Strathen, p. 368.
* ^ Hale, p. 187.
* ^ Acton, p. 111.
* ^ A B Acton, p. 192.
* ^ Acton, p. 27.
* ^ Acton, p. 38.
* ^ A B Hale, p. 180.
* ^ Hale, p. 181.
* ^ Acton, p. 108.
* ^ Acton, p. 112.
* ^ Acton, p. 182.
* ^ Acton, p. 243.
* ^ Strathern, p. 392.
* ^ Hale, p. 191.
* ^ Acton, p. 175.
* ^ Acton, p. 280.
* ^ Acton, p. 188.
* ^ Acton, p. 301.
* ^ Acton, p. 304.
* ^ "Anna Maria Luisa de\'
Medici – Electress Palatine".
Retrieved 3 September 2009.
* ^ Acton, p. 209.
* ^ Acton, p. 310.
* ^ Acton, p. 309.
* ^ Hibbert, p. 60.
* ^ Howard Hibbard,
Michelangelo (New York: Harper and Row, 1974),
* ^ Peter Barenboim, Sergey Shiyan, Michelangelo: Mysteries of
Medici Chapel, SLOVO, Moscow, 2006. ISBN 5-85050-825-2
* ^ Hibbard, p. 240.
* ^ Official site of the
Accademia delle Arti del Disegno of
Florence, Brief History (it. leng.)
* ^ Two more sons: Arrigo (?-?), Giovanni (?-?)
* ^ Three more sons: Talento (?-?), he had a son, Mario died in
1369 , Mario had few unremarkable later generations; Jacopo (?-1340)
who had a son, Averardo (fl. 1363); Francesco (?-?), who had a son,
Malatesta died in 1367.
* ^ Four sons: Guccio (from which descended a line extinct in 1670
with Ottaviano), Filippo (?-?), Betto (fl. 1348), Ardinghello (fl.
* ^ One more son: GIOVANNI (fl. 1383). Giovanni had a son, Antonio
(?-1396) and a nephew, Felice (?-?).
* ^ One son, Coppo , (?-?). Cfr. Mecatti, Giuseppe Maria; Muratori,
Lodovico Antonio (1755). Storia cronologica della città di Firenze
(in Italian). Parte prima. Naples: Stamperia Simoniana. p. 157.
Retrieved March 28, 2016.
* ^ Two more brothers unknown.
* ^ Two more brothers: ANDREA (*? †?), BARTOLOMEO (*? †?).
* ^ One more brother: PIETRO (*? †?), line extinct.
* ^ One more brother: GIOVANNI (*? †?)
* ^ One more son: Francesco (†1552?)
* ^ One more son Bernardo (†1592?)
* ^ John Woodward, A Treatise on Ecclesiastical Heraldry, 1894, p.
* Hibbert, Christopher (1975). The House of Medici: Its Rise and
Fall. Morrow. ISBN 0-688-00339-7 .
* Miles J. Unger, Magnifico: The Brilliant Life and Violent Times of
Lorenzo de Medici, (Simon and Schuster 2008) is a vividly colorful new
biography of this true "renaissance man", the uncrowned ruler of
Florence during its golden age
Christopher Hibbert , The House of Medici: Its Rise and Fall
(Morrow, 1975) is a highly readable, non-scholarly general history of
Ferdinand Schevill , History of Florence: From the Founding of the
City Through the Renaissance (Frederick Ungar, 1936) is the standard
overall history of Florence
* Cecily Booth , Cosimo I, Duke of Florence, 1921, University Press
Harold Acton , The Last Medici, Macmillan, London, 1980, ISBN
Paul Strathern , The Medici—Godfathers of the Renaissance
(Pimlico, 2005) is an informative and lively account of the Medici
family, their finesse and foibles—extremely readable, though with a
few factual and typographical errors.
* Lauro Martines , April Blood—
Florence and the Plot Against the
Medici (Oxford University Press 2003) a detailed account of the Pazzi
Conspiracy, the players, the politics of the day, and the fallout of
the assassination plot . Though accurate in historic details, Martines
writes with a definite 'anti-Medici' tone.
Accounting in Italy
* Herbert Millingchamp Vaughan , The
Medici Popes. New York: G.P.
Putnam's Sons, 1908.
* Jonathan Zophy , A Short History of Renaissance and Reformation
Europe, Dances over Fire and Water. 1996. 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River,
New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2003.
* Villa Niccolini (Camugliano) , Villa Niccolini, is one of the
Medici's tuscany villa previously called Villa Medicea di Camugliano,
Villa Niccolini is located east from Ponsacco, near a little feudal
Jean Lucas-Dubreton , Daily Life in
Florence in the Time of the
* Danny Chaplin , "The Medici: Rise of a Parvenu Dynasty,