Florence in History

Historical Events

Victory in Battle

0406-08-23 Battle at Florence: Stilicho's Roman army beats Radagaisus' Barbarians

  • 1333-11-04 Flood of the Arno River, causing massive damage in Florence as recorded by the Florentine chronicler Giovanni Villani

Florence Cathedral

1334-07-18 Bishop of Florence blesses the first foundation stone for new campanile (bell tower) of the Florence Cathedral, designed by artist Giotto di Bondone

  • 1382-03-15 Conservative "Popolo Grasso" regain power in Florence, Italy
  • 1419-12-11 Heretic Nicolaas Serrurier exiled from Florence
  • 1466-08-26 A conspiracy against Piero di Cosimo de Medici in Florence, led by Luca Pitti, is discovered
  • 1478-04-26 Pazzi conspirators attack Lorenzo de'Medici and kill Giuliano de'Medici in Florence
  • 1494-11-08 Uprising against Piero de' Medici in Florence
  • 1494-11-09 Piero the Unfortunate of the de' Medici family, ruler of Florence, loses his power and flees the state

Historic Event

1494-11-18 French King Charles VIII occupies Florence

  • 1498-04-07 Crowd storms Savonarola's convent San Marco Florence, Italy
  • 1526-05-22 Pope Clemens VII, France, Genoa, Venice, Florence & Milan form Anti-French League of Cognac
  • 1527-05-16 Florence becomes a republic
  • 1530-08-12 Florence surrenders for emperor Karel I
  • 1602-12-05 Giulio Caccini's "Euridice" premieres in Florence

Historic Event

1737-03-12 Galileo's body moved to Church of Santa Croce in Florence, Italy

Music Premiere

1847-03-14 Premiere of Giuseppe Verdi's opera "Macbeth" at the Teatro della Pergola, Florence

Music History

1887-05-02 Gioachino Rossini's corpse transferred to Santa Croce, Florence

  • 1902-06-23 Monument to composer Gioachino Rossini unveiled in Santa Croce, Florence, Italy
  • 1911-06-17 US National Championship Women's Tennis, Philadelphia CC: Hazel Hotchkiss Wightman beats Florence Sutton 8-10, 6-1, 9-7 for her third straight US singles title
  • 1921-02-27 The Fascists incite a riot in Florence, Italy
  • 1944-08-04 British 8th Army reaches suburbs of Florence, Italy
  • 1944-08-13 British 8th Army occupies Florence
  • 1954-10-18 WBTW TV channel 13 in Florence, SC (CBS/ABC) begins broadcasting
  • 1957-10-27 WOWL TV channel 15 in Florence, AL (NBC/CBS) begins broadcasting
  • 1961-05-27 Fiorentina of Italy win 1st European Cup Winner's Cup against Glasgow Rangers 4-2 in Florence (2nd leg)
  • 1967-08-16 WFIQ TV channel 36 in Florence, AL (PBS) begins broadcasting
  • 1967-09-03 WJPM TV channel 33 in Florence, SC (PBS) begins broadcasting

Sports History

1981-06-10 Sebastian Coe of England sets 800m record (1:41.73) in Florence

  • 1984-08-09 Valerie Brisco-Hooks beats fellow American Florence Griffith to win the 200m gold at the LA Olympics; completes the 200-400m double
  • 1993-05-27 Mafia bombs Uffizi Museum in Florence, killing 6
  • 2018-09-04 Italian city Florence bans people eating in the street in its historic center

Famous Birthdays

  • 1265-05-09 Dante Alighieri, Italian poet and author (Dante's Inferno, Divina Commedia), born in Florence, Republic of Florence (d. 1321)

Cosimo de' MediciCosimo de' Medici (1389-1464)

1389-09-27 Italian banker, de facto ruler of Florence and patron of the arts, born in Florence

  • 1400-12-22 Luca della Robbia, Italian sculptor (Madonna of Rose Garden), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1482)
  • 1416-03-27 Antonio Squarcialupi [Giovanni], Italian composer and organist (Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, 1432-80), born in Florence (d. 1480)
  • 1432-08-15 Luigi Pulci, Italian poet (Morgante), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1484)
  • 1435-10-20 Andrea Della Robbia, Italian sculptor, nephew of Luca, born in Florence (d. 1525)

Leonardo da VinciLeonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)

1452-04-15 Italian painter, sculptor, scientist and visionary, born in Vinci, Florence, Italy

  • 1452-09-21 Girolamo Savonarola, Italian preacher and dictator of Florence (1494-98), born in Ferrara, Italy (d. 1498)

Amerigo VespucciAmerigo Vespucci (1454-1512)

1454-03-09 Italian explorer (America), born in Florence

Niccolo MachiavelliNiccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527)

1469-05-03 Italian statesman and author (The Prince), born in Florence, Italy

  • 1471-02-15 Piero di Lorenzo de' Medici, ruler of Florence (d. 1503)
  • 1472-03-28 Fra Bartolommeo, Florentine Renaissance painter (The Last Judgement), born in Florence (d. 1517)
  • 1474-10-13 Mariotto Albertinelli, Italian painter, born in Florence (d. 1515)

Leo XLeo X (1475-1521)

1475-12-11 Italian Catholic Pope (1513-21), born in Florence, Italy

  • 1478-05-26 Pope Clement VII [Giulio de' Medici], Italian Pope (1523-34), born in Florence (d. 1534)
  • 1479-03-12 Giuliano de' Medici, Italian ruler of Florence (1513-16), born in Florence (d. 1516)
  • 1484-04-12 Antonio da Sangallo the Younger, Italian architect, born in Florence (d. 1546)
  • 1490-10-12 Bernardo Pisano, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1548)
  • 1492-09-12 Lorenzo II de' Medici, Duke of Urbino, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1519)
  • 1493-09-28 Agnolo Firenzuola, Italian poet and litterateur, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1543)
  • 1502-07-27 Francesco Corteccia, Italian composer, born in Florence (d. 1571)
  • 1508-12-24 Pietro Carnesecchi, Italian humanist, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1567)
  • 1510-07-22 Alessandro de' Medici, Duke of Florence (d. 1537)
  • 1511-07-30 Giorgio Vasari, Italian painter and art historian (Vasari's Lives), born in Arezzo, Republic of Florence (d. 1574)
  • 1515-07-21 St Philippus Nerius [Philippo Neri], Italian merchant/priest, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1595)

Catherine de' MediciCatherine de' Medici (1519-1589)

1519-04-13 Italian born Queen consort to Henry II of France and later regent to her sons, born in Florence

  • 1519-05-27 Girolamo Mei, Italian historian and editor of Greek texts, born in Florence (d. 1594)
  • 1519-06-12 Cosimo I de Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany and art patron of Florence, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1574)
  • 1521-08-19 Lodovico Guicciardini, Italian historian (Descrittione di Tutti), born in Florence (d. 1589)
  • 1535-05-31 Alessandro Allori, Italian painter and carpet designer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1607)
  • 1549-07-30 Ferdinando I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, born in Florence (d. 1609)

Galileo GalileiGalileo Galilei (1564-1642)

1564-02-15 Italian astronomer, physicist and engineer who has been called the father of science, born in Pisa, Duchy of Florence, Italy

  • 1573-04-26 Marie de' Medici, Queen of France, born in Palazzo Pitti, Florence (d. 1642)
  • 1577-06-21 Giovanni Del Turco, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1647)
  • 1578-02-09 Giambattista Andreini, Italian playwright and actor (L'adamo), born in Florence (d. 1654)
  • 1582-05-01 Marco da Gagliano, Italian opera composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1643)
  • 1582-12-23 Severo Bonini, Italian composer and monk, born in Florence (d. 1663)
  • 1587-09-18 Francesca Caccini, Italian composer and singer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1641)

Alexander VIIAlexander VII (1599-1667)

1599-02-13 Italian Pope (1655-67), born in Siena, Florence, Italy

  • 1603-04-26 Francesco Nigetti, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1681)
  • 1604-06-04 Claudia de' Medici, Grand Duchess of Tuscany, born in Palazzo Pitti, Florence, Tuscany (d. 1648)
  • 1606-05-06 Lorenzo Lippi [Perlone Zipoli], Italian poet and painter, born in Florence (d. 1664)
  • 1622-04-05 Vincenzo Viviani, Italian mathematician (Viviani's theorem), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1703)
  • 1636-09-18 Pietro Sanmartini, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1701)
  • 1638-07-15 Giovanni Buonaventura Viviani, Italian composer, born in Florence (d. 1693)
  • 1642-08-14 Cosimo III de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, monarch of Florence (1670-1723), born in Pitti Palace, Florence, Tuscany (d. 1723)
  • 1652-04-07 Clement XII [Lorenzo Corsini], Italian Pope (1730-40) who despite ill health and total blindness (1732) unsuccessfully stemmed decline of papal influence, born in Florence (d. 1740)
  • 1653-05-30 Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Empress consort of Germany, born in Florence, Tuscany (d. 1676)
  • 1671-05-24 Gian Gastone de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, born in Pitti Palace, Florence, Tuscany (d. 1737)
  • 1690-02-01 Francesco Maria Veracini, Italian opera composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1768)
  • 1691-08-25 Alessandro Galilei, Italian architect (Cappella Corsini), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1736)
  • 1695-05-02 Giovanni Niccolò Servandoni, Italian-French architect, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1766)
  • 1697-12-05 Carlo Arrigoni, Italian composer and musician, born in Florence (d. 1744)
  • 1703-08-02 Lorenzo Ricci, Italian Jesuit leader (18th & last Superior General of the Society of Jesus), born in Florence (d. 1775)
  • 1723-04-25 Giovanni Marco Rutini, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1797)
  • 1729-04-18 Gaétan Vestris, French ballet dancer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1808)
  • 1730-06-14 Antonio Sacchini, Italian opera composer, born in Florence (d. 1786)
  • 1732-04-18 George Colman the Elder, English dramatist, born in Florence (d. 1794)
  • 1737-10-22 Vincenzo Manfredini, Italian harpsichordist, composer, and music theorist, born in Pistoia, Grand Duchy of Tuscany (now Italy) (d. 1799)
  • 1760-09-14 Luigi Cherubini, Italian musical prodigy, composer (Médée; Requiem in D minor), and educator (Conservatoire de Paris, 1822-42), baptized in Florence, Grand Duchy of Tuscany (now Italy) (d. 1842) [birth was likely on the 8th]
  • 1768-02-12 Francis II, Florence Italy, last Holy Roman emperor (1792-1806)
  • 1769-05-06 Ferdinand III, Grand Duke of Tuscany (1790-1801), born in Florence (d. 1824)

Archduke CharlesArchduke Charles (1771-1847)

1771-09-05 Duke of Teschen, born in Florence, Italy

  • 1784-12-13 Archduke Louis of Austria, 14th child of Holy Roman Emperor Leopold II and Feldmarschal-Leutnant of Austrian Imperial Army, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1864)
  • 1792-09-14 Gino Capponi, Italian marquis, literary and Premier of Toscane, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1876)
  • 1796-06-25 Ferdinando Giorgetti, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1867)
  • 1797-10-03 Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany, born in Florence (d. 1870)
  • 1800-05-06 Ferdinand Marcucci, Italian harpist and composer, born in Florence (d. 1871)
  • 1808-04-13 Antonio Meucci, Italian inventor (invented a telephone-like device), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1889)
  • 1835-06-10 Ferdinand IV, Grand Duke of Tuscany, born in Florence (d. 1908)
  • 1837-11-13 James T. Rapier, African-American politician, born in Florence, Alabama (d. 1883)
  • 1848-07-09 Robert I, Duke of Parma, last ruling Duke of Parma, born in Florence, Tuscany (d. 1907)
  • 1852-11-25 Johan Salvator, Archduke of Austria, born in Florence, Grand Duchy of Tuscany (d. 1890)
  • 1856-01-12 John Singer Sargent, American painter (Wyndham Sisters), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1925)
  • 1865-06-04 Guido Gasperini, Italian composer, born in Florence (d. 1942)
  • 1869-01-23 Felice Boghen, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1945)
  • 1881-03-26 Guccio Gucci, Italian founder of Gucci fashion house, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1953)
  • 1883-03-13 Enrico Toselli, Italian pianist and composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1926)
  • 1884-12-25 [Florence] Evelyn Nesbit, American actress, born in Tarentum, Pennsylvania (d. 1967)
  • 1892-01-05 Francesca Bertini, Italian actress (Odette, Assunta Spina), born in Florence, Tuscany, Italy (d. 1985)
  • 1892-09-15 Silpa Bhirasri [Corrado Feroci], Italian-Thai sculptor, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1962)
  • 1895-04-03 Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1968)
  • 1899-01-21 Lido Manetti [Arnold Kent], Italian-born American actor (Quo Vardis), born in Florence (d. 1928)
  • 1904-07-05 Harold Acton, English-Italian historian and art collector, born in Villa La Pietra, Florence, Italy (d. 1994)
  • 1909-01-09 Herva Nelli, Italian-born American soprano, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1994)
  • 1914-07-18 Gino Bartali, Italian cyclist (Tour de France 1938, 48; Giro d'Italia 1936-7, 46), born in Ponte a Ema, Florence, Italy (d. 2000)
  • 1914-08-16 Tullio Pandolfini, Italian water polo (Olympic gold 1948), born in Florence (d. 1999)
  • 1915-07-27 Mario del Monaco, Italian opera singer (Verdi/Puccini), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1982)
  • 1916-10-21 Andrea Checchi, Italian actor (The Lady Without Camelias, Two Anonymous Letters), born in Florence, Tuscany (d. 1974)
  • 1917-09-10 Franfo Fortini [Franco Lattes], Italian poet, born in Florence (d. 1994)
  • 1921-03-13 Carlo Prosperi, Italian composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1990)
  • 1921-05-12 Giovanni Benelli, Italian archbishop (Florence) and Papal candidate
  • 1923-02-12 Franco Zeffirelli, Italian director (Romeo & Juliet), born in Florence, Italy (d. 2019)
  • 1925-06-21 Giovanni Spadolini, Italian historian and politician, born in Florence, Italy (d. 1994)
  • 1926-09-26 Giuseppe Chiari, Italian artist and composer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 2007)
  • 1927-11-03 Harrison McCain, Canadian businessman (McCain Foods Limited), born in Florenceville, New Brunswick
  • 1928-10-19 Buff Cobb [Patrizia Cobb Chapman], American actress and TV personality (Masquerade Party), born in Florence, Tuscany (d. 2010)
  • 1929-07-31 Oriana Fallaci, Italian journalist and writer, born in Florence, Italy (d. 2006)
  • 1930-03-01 Gastone Nencini, Italian road cyclist (Giro d'Italia 1957; Tour de France 1960), born in Florence, Italy (d. 1980)
  • 1931-05-27 Kenny Price, American country singer ("Walking on New Grass"; "Happy Tracks"), born in Florence, Kentucky (d. 1987)

Famous Weddings

Anita Ekberg

1956-05-22 Swedish actress Anita Ekberg (24) weds actor and singer Anthony Steel (36) in Florence, Italy; divorce in 1959

Melissa Joan Hart

2003-07-19 "Sabrina, The Teenage Witch" actress Melissa Joan Hart (27) weds "Course of Nature" lead singer-guitarist Mark Wilkerson (26) in Florence, Italy

Wedding of Interest

2014-05-24 Rapper and record producer Kanye West (36) weds model Kim Kardashian (33) at Fort di Belvedere in Florence, Italy


Famous Deaths

  • 1459-05-02 Pierozzi Antoninus, Italian archbishop of Florence/saint, dies
  • 1459-10-30 Poggio Bracciolini, Italian humanist, who rediscovered lost classical texts, dies at 79

Cosimo de' MediciCosimo de' Medici (1389-1464)

1464-08-01 Italian banker, de facto ruler of Florence and patron of the arts, dies at 74

  • 1469-12-03 Piero de' Medici, ruler of Florence, dies at about 53
  • 1478-04-26 Giuliano de' Medici, Italian co-ruler of Florence with his brother Lorenzo, murdered in the Pazzi Conspiracy in Duomo of Florence at 24
  • 1498-05-23 Girolamo Savonarola, Italian Dominican friar who helped expel Medici from Florence and preached against papal corruption, hanged at 45
  • 1503-12-28 Piero di Lorenzo de' Medici, ruler of Florence (b. 1471)
  • 1516-03-17 Giuliano de' Medici, ruler of Florence, dies at 37
  • 1535-08-10 Ippolito de' Medici, ruler of Florence (poisoned) (b. 1509)
  • 1537-01-07 Alessandro de' Medici, Duke of Florence, Italian ruler of Florence (1532-37), assassinated by his friend and cousin at 26
  • 1723-10-31 Cosimo III de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, monarch of Florence (1670-1723), dies at 81
  • 1945-06-18 Florence Bascom, American geologist and 1st woman hired by the US Geological Survey, dies at 82
  • 1982-10-26 Giovanni Benelli, archbishop of Florence/Pope candidate, dies