14 Giugno 2017 · 884 Views

The Marzocco is the symbol of the Florentine Repubblic

The Marzocco is the symbol of the Florentine Repubblic
Do you know why the Florentine Republic identify with a lion?


The name Marzocco means little Mars. It dates back to the old Roman origins of Florence founded in 59 B.C. According to the tradition at the place of the Baptistery in Piazza S Giovanni, there was temple dedicated to Mars. A statue of the god was preserved here and then it was moved on Ponte Vecchio to protect the city, until the flood  of 1333 brought it away. The history instead, witnesses the temple didn't exist: in fact inside the Baptistery the old pavement of a Roman house is still visible! A mosaic decoration identified a rich roman domus.
The most famous Marzocco was sculpted by Donatello in 1418; today it is preserved inside the
National Bargello Museum but you can observe its copy in Piazza Signoria. The lion is leaning its paw on the florentine coat of arm: a red lily decorated on a white background.
A cage full of lions was situated behind Piazza Signoria in the actual Via dei Leoni in the middle of XIV century to protect priors, the representatives of Florentine government.
The bronze animal is even placed at the top of the tower of the priors palace built by
Arnolfo di Cambio in 1310. As the Florentine saying goes: "Se il lione piscia in Arno è acqua" that means if the wind blows and the lion turns towards the  Arno pissing in the river, it is going to rain!

A copy of the Marzocco in Piazza Signoria (left)
The bronze emblem of Florence situated at the top of Palazzo Vecchio (right)


Santa Reparata and its precious remains

Santa reparata was destroyed only at the end of the XIV century when works for the edification of the new one were going on.

Leggi ora!

Michelangelo and the secret room in the New Sacristy

The artist drew even his self-portrait depicting the attitude of an imprisoned man. Nobody thought he was hidden in the holy place of the Medici family, the...

Leggi ora!

The Chapel of Mary Magdalene in the Bargello Museum and Dante's portrait

In the same period Seymour Kirkup, the historian who financed works in the chapel of Mary Magdalene, was the owner of Dante's mask now preserved inside...

Leggi ora!

The stone of the outrage

From 1282 priors were representatives of the seven Major guilds: they fighted against the old aristocratic families revenging an active role of trade in...

Leggi ora!

Visite guidate

nel cuore della mostra è una grande sala dove sono esposte 55 tavole originali di bozzetti che...
Visita guidata alla chiesa d'Ognissanti e al Cenacolo del Ghirlandaio. Troveremo anche il bel...
nei luoghi che hanno segnato la loro storia: dal quartiere mediceo, rinnovato da Cosimo il Vecchio...
Andrea del Sarto e il suo incredibile cenacolo in San Salvi. Per alcuni paragonabile, per...