If Italy is the birthplace of the Renaissance, then Florence is its real embodiment, which has preserved the spirit of that time to the present day. Florence can rightly be called an open-air museum city.
“Not much was really invented during the Renaissance, if you don't count modern civilization.” P. J. O'Rourke
The oldest city located in the heart of Tuscany, on the banks of the Arno River, named by Guy Julius Caesar – Florence, which means “blooming”, carefully preserves the heritage of great ancestors - Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Dante, Raphael, Petrarch, and many others.
Renaissance is the era of intellectual and artistic flourishing that began in Italy in the 14th century, reaching its peak in the 16th century and having a significant impact on European culture. The term "Renaissance", meaning a return to the values of the ancient world, appeared in the 15th century and received a theoretical justification in the 16th century in the writings of Vasari dedicated to the works of famous artists, sculptors, and architects. At that time, the idea of harmony reigning in nature and man being the greatest of its creations took shape. Among the prominent representatives of this era is the great architect, artist, scientist, poet, and mathematician Leonardo da Vinci.
Around 1425, Florence became the center of the Renaissance.
Florence of the Renaissance was a place full of contention. Two giants of that era - Leonardo and Michelangelo - could not stand each other, but their confrontation resulted in the creation of beautiful masterpieces. The rivalry of Lorenzo Ghiberti and Filippo Brunelleschi lasted for decades as well. When Brunelleschi failed to win the competition for the construction of the "Gates of Paradise", he went to Rome to study, and then, armed with new knowledge, returned home and erected a symbol of the city - the famous dome of the Duomo.
The Boboli Gardens are another famous example of the Italian Renaissance and one of the best park ensembles of Florence. The Boboli Gardens, named after the hill on which they are situated, were founded by Eleanor of Toledo, wife of the great Cosimo I de Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
Initially, the garden designer Niccolò Tribolo worked on the arrangement of the park, but his impending death did not allow him to carry out his plans to the end. Bartolomeo Ammanati (the creator of the Fountain of Neptune on Signoria Square in Florence) took up the matter next. According to his idea, the center of the park zone became an amphitheater, and its main highlight is the ancient Egyptian obelisk from Luxor, specially brought here from the ducal Roman villa.
Giorgio Vasari, who created most of the park grottoes, and his student Bernardo Buontalenti, who left behind the beautiful sculptures that adorn the site, also contributed to the arrangement of the gardens.
Florence itself had becоme more magnificent. Florentine painting and sculpture reached amazing heights in the days of the Renaissance.
Known names of artists associated with this period are Giotto, Donatello, Masaccio, Mantegna, Botticelli, Raphael, Titian, not to mention Michelangelo Buonarroti and Leonardo da Vinci. Florence was also the literary center where Petrarch and Boccaccio, the historian Machiavelli and the architect Vasari worked.