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Visita il Mugello, culla dei Medici, a due passi da Firenze e le bellezze toscane

Visiting Tuscany



Palazzo Pazzi

This imposing edifice, one of the most important in Firenze, was commissioned by Jacopo de' Pazzi and built to the design of Giuliano da Maiano in the period between 1458-1469. In erecting the building he had a careful eye for harmony and decoration, as can be seen from the characteristic courtyard formed by arches with columns adorned with dolphins (the symbol of the Pazzi family) and vases for the sacred fire, in memory of Pazzino de' Pazzi who during the first Crusade was the first man to scale the walls of Jerusalem. He brought back with him from Jerusalem the sacred flint stones which for centuries have been used in Piazza del Duomo to light the fuse for the Scoppio del Carro (Explosion of the Cart) ritual on Easter Day.

Also of great interest are the beautiful plant-shoot decorations carved on the cornices of the external windows of the palace. Other decorative elements with depictions of sailing vessels were also carved as a reminder of the importance of the maritime commerce conducted by the Pazzi family.
The famous conspiracy (congiura) to kill Lorenzo the Magnificent was organised in this palace by the Pazzi family in 1478, in which, however, it was Lorenzo's brother Giuliano who died. Lorenzo's response was extremely harsh - after the ringleader Giuliano de' Pazzi had been killed by popular demand, all the members of the family were exiled and their property and goods confiscated.

Over the centuries this palace has been the property of a number of different families (including the Strozzi) and illustrious figures. It now house offices of the state pensions and benefits department (INPS). It is possible to visit the palace on formal request to the Firenze management of the INPS.

Picture by Sandro Santioli
Translated by Jeremy Carden

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