|THE MEDICI RULERS OF FLORENCE|
|Published on January 1, 2020|
|H E K T O R A M A:|
|THE GOUT OF MEDICI
Florence in the fifteenth century was one of the most important cities in Western Europe. Rich and resplendent, first in banking and in the wool trade, it even issued its own currency, the golden florin, widely used throughout Europe. For some three hundred years the city was ruled almost continuously by the Medici, at one time the richest family in Europe. Their coat of arms with its red balls (or balle) on a golden field has been variously interpreted as representing victory, or coins, or perhaps that the Medici—as their name implied—had once been apothecaries or physicians and that the red balls signified pills or cupping glasses.
|Cosimo the Elder||Lorenzo the Magnificent||Piero de’ Medici (“The Gouty”)||Cosimo I, Grand Duke of Tuscany|