Destination List > Basilica di San Lorenzo

Basilica di San Lorenzo

The history...

The Basilica di San Lorenzo is a large and beautiful church built outside the city walls of Florence in the year 393. It’s the burial place for the Medici family who were rich and powerful rulers in Italy. 

The Basilica di San Lorenzo was the cathedral church of the city for three hundred years and was the official seat of the bishop during that time. It was also the parish church of the Medici family until the church was rebuilt years later. 

Inside the Basilica di San Lorenzo is a decoration and sculpture by the famous artist, Donatello. There is also the Laurentian Library that was influenced by Michelangelo and the Old Sacristy by Bruenelleschi where church furnishings and vestments are kept. There is a cloisture of enchanting green space in the center where you can look up at the sky. In the cloisture, there is a round-arch arcade with elegant columns created by Brunelleschi’s disciple, Antonio Manetti Ciaccheri between 1457 and 1460. 

In the museum area, there is a crypt belonging to Donatello and the tomb of his close friend, Cosimo di Medici. The main part of the church has gorgeous arches and columns that stretch up to the ceiling for all to admire.

Fun Fact

The front exterior of the basilica was never completed. Michelangelo wanted it to be covered in smooth marble but today it is still made of rough stone.

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