Do immerse ourselves in the Florence of the Medici and in order to understand how powerful this family was in the first half of the XV century, I want to propose the visit of two important monuments: the Museum of San Marco and the Church of Santissima Annunziata. If you like to follow me in this unusual tour, I will show you not only two jewels of artistic heritage, but also two places which are the symbols of the assertion of power of the Medici. It would be better starting from the Medici home, the Palazzo Medici Riccardi to briefly introduce the history of the family and the two characters who will be with us in this tour: Cosimo (the Elder) and his son Piero. If we have time enough, I would like to show you the frescoes of the Magi Parade in the Palace Chapel, a real political, religious and social poster committed to Benozzo Gozzoli.Then we will reach San Mark square where the San Marco Museum, once a domenican monastery, is located. This is a place which has preserved its intact charme through the centuries, combining art and spirituality. The spaces are the same Michelozzo designed for the friars, with the money of Cosimo de’ Medici who wanted private rooms for his personal meditation. The most famous frescoes by Beato Angelico ornate beautifully the rooms of the monastery.Our next stop will be the Church of Santissima Annunziata in the homonymous square. The Church is one of the most ancient and venerated in Florence. The building is part of the complex of the monastery of the Servi di Maria and once it was much larger, extending up to San Mark square.
The church shows a rich decoration supported by wealthy families through the centuries. Entering the first Cloister, called the Chiostro dei voti, we can admire the famous frescoes by Andrea del Sarto, Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentino. Inside the church we will be immediately welcome by the Altar of the Annunziata, full of ex-voto, offerings and lamps since 1341.
Then I will tell you about Maria Maddalena de’ Medici and her private passage to reach the church from her home.
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