Palazzo Davanzati

Palazzo Davanzati (42)

The Palazzo Davanzati is also known today as the Museum of the Former Florentine Home and houses a retrospective of life in medieval Florence. 

The origins of this palace date back to the early 14th century, when it was built by the Davizzi family, who were engaged in the wool trade. Later, in 1578, it was acquired by the historian Bernardo Davanzati and belonged to this family until the last member of the dynasty committed suicide in 1838. Following this the antiquarian Elia Volpi acquired the building and converted it into a museum, a function that has continued to carry out until today, though now under state ownership. 

Visitors will notice that the building is constructed around a beautiful, medieval-style courtyard which retains the former warehouses and barns. In the centre is a well that was used to supply water to the household, a luxury at the time as people were generally still dependent on public wells. Another highlight of the courtyard is the staircase leads to the upper floors and is constructed on a series of rampant arches. This is one of the most important and beautiful of its kind in Florence.

The rooms of the palace are decorated with wonderful tapestries, exquisite furniture and numerous frescos and painted ceilings. One of the most striking rooms you find is known as the Sala dei Pappagalli, and is adorned with frescoes featuring parrot motifs. Another highlight is the main room or Camera Nuziale, decorated with the coats of arms of families related to the Davanzatti as well as a beautiful painted frieze of trees and exotic birds. 

The third floor houses a very well-equipped kitchen area. A fact worth mentioning is that, at that time, the kitchen was usually located on the top floor of the house so as not to inundate the whole house with smells and smoke. 

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