A History of Florence 1200-1575 / Edition 1

A History of Florence 1200-1575 / Edition 1

by John M. Najemy
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A History of Florence 1200-1575 / Edition 1

Florence during the Renaissance is famously known as the center for the rebirth of scholarship, literature, and the arts. But it was also an autonomous republic, a site of innovative experiments in government, a major economic power that produced great wealth and yet underwent recurrent fiscal crises, and a locus of conflicts among the elite families, the guild community, and the working classes, and between family-based factions grounded in patronage and private power.

In this history of Florence, distinguished historian John Najemy discusses all the major phases of Florentine history from 1200 to 1575, including the formation of the elite of great families, the rise of the guild-based "popolo" and the guild republic of the 1290s, the crisis of the 1340s, the revolutions of 1378-82, the wars against Milan, the fiscal crisis of the 1420-30s, the rise and fall of the Medici regime, the republican revival in the age of Savonarola and Machiavelli, and the drama of the last republic of 1527-30 and subsequent emergence of the principate. His account weaves together intellectual, cultural, social, economic, religious, and political developments, capturing Florence's transformation from a medieval commune into an aristocratic republic and finally into a princely and territorial state.

Based on the mass of scholarship on Florentine history, and on a first-hand understanding and close reading of the primary sources, Najemy provides an original interpretation of Florentine history that will appeal to scholars and general readers for years to come.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781405119542
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 11/13/2006
Pages: 528
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.36(d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations viii

List of Maps ix

Acknowledgments x

Introduction 1

1 The Elite Families 5

Lineages 6

Knighthood and Feuds 11

Political Alignments and Factions 20

Culture and Religion 27

2 The Popolo 35

Definitions 35

Guilds 39

Culture and Education: Notaries 45

Religion 50

Critique of Elite Misrule 57

3 Early Conflicts of Elite and Popolo 63

Before 1250 64

Primo Popolo 66

Angevin Alliance 72

Priorate of the Guilds 76

Second Popolo and the Ordinances of Justice 81

Elite Resurgence: Black and White Guelfs 88

4 Domestic Economy and Merchant Empires to 1340 96

Population: City and Contado 96

Textiles, Building, and Provisioning 100

Merchant Companies and the Mercanzia 109

Taxation and Public Finances 118

5 The Fourteenth-Century Dialogue of Power 124

Elite Dominance, 1310–40 124

Crisis of the 1340s and the Third Popular Government 132

Funded Public Debt and Bankruptcies 139

Elite Recovery and Popular Reaction 144

War against the Church 151

6 Revolution and Realignment 156

Workers’ Economic Conditions 157

The Ciompi Revolution 161

The Last Guild Government 166

Counterrevolution 171

Fear of the Working Classes 176

Consensus Politics 182

7 War, Territorial Expansion, and the Transformation of Political Discourse 188

First Visconti Wars 189

Territorial Dominion: The Conquest of Pisa 194

Civic Humanism 200

The Civic Family 211

8 Family and State in the Age of Consensus 219

The Family Imaginary 219

Households, Marriage, Dowries 225

Women, Property, Inheritance 232

Children, Hospitals, Charity 238

Policing Sodomy 244

9 Fateful Embrace: The Emergence of the Medici 250

A New Style of Leadership 250

Fiscal Crisis and the Catasto 254

Cosimo’s Money and Friends 262

Showdown 269

10 The Medici and the Ottimati: A Partnership of Conflict

Part I: Cosimo and Piero 278

Institutional Controls 280

External Supports: Papacy and Sforza Milan 286

Cosimo’s Coup 291

The Ottimati Challenge Piero 298

11 The Luxury Economy and Art Patronage 307

Poverty and Wealth 307

Public and Private Patronage 315

Family Commemoration and Self-Fashioning 323

12 The Medici and the Ottimati: A Partnership of Conflict

Part 2: Lorenzo 341

Lorenzo’s Elders 344

Lorenzo’s Volterra Massacre 348

Pazzi Conspiracy and War 352

The (Insecure) Prince in All but Name 361

Building a Dynasty 369

13 Reinventing the Republic 375

French Invasion and Expulsion of the Medici 375

The Great Council 381

Savonarola’s Holy Republic 390

Domestic Discord and Dominion Crises 400

Soderini, Machiavelli’s Militia, and Pisa 407

14 Papal Overlords 414

The Cardinal and a Controversial Marriage 415

Fall of the Republic and Return of the Medici 419

A Regime Adrift 426

Aristocratic and Popular Republicanisms 434

The Nascent Principate 441

15 The Last Republic and the Medici Duchy 446

Revolution 447

Siege 453

Imposition of a New Order 461

Ducal Government 468

Finances and Economy 473

Courtly and Cultural Discipline 478

Victor and Vanquished 482

Epilogue: Remembrance of Things Past 486

Index 491

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