What Was The Source Of Florence�S Wealth And Power ? Economy Of Florence

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Florence, Italian Firenze, Latin Florentia, city, capital of Firenze provincia (province) and Toscana (Tuscany) regione (region), central Italy. The city, located about 145 miles (230 km) northwest of Rome, is surrounded by gently rolling hills that are covered with villas and farms, vineyards, and orchards. Florence was founded as a Roman military colony about the 1st century bce, and during its long history it has been a republic, a seat of the duchy of Tuscany, and a capital (1865–70) of Italy. During the 14th–16th century Florence achieved preeminence in commerce and finance, learning, and especially the arts.

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The present glory of Florence is mainly its past. Indeed, its historic centre was inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 1982. The buildings there are works of art abounding in yet more works of art, and the splendours of the city are stamped with the personalities of the individuals who made them. The geniuses of Florence were backed by persons of towering wealth, and the city to this day gives testimony to their passions for religion, for art, for power, or for money. Among the most famous of the city’s cultural giants are Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Dante, Machiavelli, Galileo, and its most-renowned rulers, generations of the Medici family.

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Tour the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance to see the Ponte Vecchio “living bridge” on the Arno River
Views of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore (the Duomo), the Arno River, Ponte Vecchio, the Uffizi Gallery, and the tower of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy.

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Scholars still marvel that this small city of moneylenders and cloth makers without much political or military power rose to a position of enormous influence in Italy, Europe, and beyond. The Florentine vernacular became the Italian language, and the local coin, the florin, became a world monetary standard. Florentine artists formulated the laws of perspective; Florentine people of letters, painters, architects, and craftspeople began the period known as the Renaissance; and a Florentine navigator, Amerigo Vespucci, gave his name to two continents.

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