ITALY: Florence – Renaissance Revival & Population Explosion

Posted by on Apr 21, 2017 in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

I thought that the onslaught of humanity I encountered in Rome would somehow be relieved in Florence. Rome could be excused due to it being Easter weekend. If anything Florence was worse. Battalions of tour groups crisscrossed seemingly every block of the city in search of the next attraction. I was here about ten years ago and I don’t remember it being like this.

Frankly it was oppressive. Miserable old ladies from God knows where would constantly come up to you shaking their plastic change cups in your face. There was a guy in a filthied up raincoat and no slacks or socks that was clearly a costume meant to make him look mentally ill. He was out and about the next day with a special addition of straw perched atop his head, like that was supposed to make the thing more convincing somehow.

Thank goodness for my amazing hostel which was a calm refuge from what was otherwise an overwhelming deluge of torrential tourism.



                             ACCADEMIA MUSEUM

GIAMBOLOGNA – Rape of the Sabines – 1582






MICHELANGELO – David – 1502/1504

“Nor has there ever been seen a pose so fluent, or a gracefulness equal to this, or feet, hands and head so well related to each other with quality, skill and design.” With these words Giorgio Visari attempts to define the reasons behind the marvel that the vision of David provokes in the observer. He continues by stating that the statue so far surpasses both in beauty and technique ancient and modern statuary that one needn’t bother seeing other works in sculpture.


Cosimo de Medici – He was the first Medici family member to control Florence.


Io Gasto Medici

Lorenzo de Medici – Lorenzo the Great


Giotto di BONDONE – Madonna and Child Enthroned with Angels and Saints – 1306/1310

One of the first Renaissance paintings to utilize perspective.

Filippo LIPPI – Madonna and Child with Two Angels – 1460/1465

This is his most celebrated work which is remarkable for its freshness and its natural spontaneity.

BOTTICELLI – The Birth of Venus – 1485


BOTTICELLI –  Madonna of the Pomegranate – 1487

Seated in his mother’s lap, the Christ Child clutches a pomegranate, a fruit with multiple symbolic meanings whose red seeds evoke the blood spilled by Jesus for mankind’s salvation.


BOTTICELLI – Madonna of the Magnificent – 1483

The Virgin crowned by angels is captured in the act of writing what is known as the Canticle of Mary: My soul doth magnify the Lord. The originality of the composition, the sophisticated elegance of the garment and hair, and Mary’s rapt and graceful features have made this one of Botticelli’s most celebrated works throughout the ages.

MICHELANGELO – The Holy Family – 1507 (?)

After viewing those breathtaking Botticelli’s, a look out the window afforded an outstanding view.


Raffaello SANZIO – Self Portrait – 1506

Leonardo DA VINCI – Annunciation – 1472

Fillipino LIPPI – Adoration of the Magi – 1496

Pasta with Truffles and Sausage











                               The Galileo Museum

Carlo MARCELLINI – Bust of Galileo Galilei – 1674-1677

Amici II Telescope on Left – Three Newtonian Telescopes on Right

ARMILLARY SPHERE – Florence – 1588-1593


PLANETARY CLOCK – The clocks innovative dial allows the motions of all the planets to be seen at a glance.


                              Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens








NEPTUNE’S FOUNTAIN – Notice the heron awaiting his catch.




ANNA PIAGGI – Anna was a fashion journalist, author, and collector; an icon of eccentric, extravagant and provocative style, but also an extremely elegant woman.



  1. Jason
    May 1, 2017

    Enjoying my monday morning coffee with the travel zealot. Do you think most of those paintings from the 1400’s have been restored in some fashion? They look so fresh and vidid. It must be pain staking work to be restoring priceless pieces of art.

  2. The Travel Zealot
    May 2, 2017

    That’s a good question, Jason. One that I don’t have an answer to. However I suspect that they have been cleaned over the years. Those Botticellis are amazing and look like they were painted yesterday.

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