Step back to the 14th-15th century when the Medici ruled Florence and the great masters adorned Florence with their art. This is the experience of visiting the historic district of Florence and the Piazza della Signoria. The Piazza della Signoria was the seat of power. The fortress, palace and town hall built in Romanesque architecture. It is still in existence and is the focal point of the square. Witin a short walking distance you can visit the Ponte Vecchio, Piazza de Duomo, Uffizi Gallery, Pitti Museum and the Loggia del Lanzi. The Piazza della Signoria remains as an important piece in the history of Florence. A pedestrian walkway makes strolling the district easy and safe. A police presence can also be seen. Don't even think about bring a car. There is no parking and public transportation is cheap and accessible. The highlights of the piazza include: a copy of David, the Fountain of Neptune (1575 Ammannati), Hercules and Cacus (1533 Bandinelli), The Rape of the Sabine Women (Giambologna, Perseus with the Head of Medusa (1554 Cellini), etc.. It is an open air sculpture gallery. A bronze statue of Cosimi I on his horse, a Medici (1554), can also be seen. A few steps infront of the Fountain of Neptune is a circular plaque which marks the spot where the friar Savanaroia was executed. He orchestrated the Bonfire of the Vanities, an assault on what he deemed was morally wrong. Books, art, wigs and make-up, etc. were burned in the square. There are quite a few restaurants in the square area. The historic cafe Rivoire to name just one. Realize that you will pay a premium for the dining experience. At time there are street performances and other special events on the piazza. The Piazza della Signoria has it's own website so you can check on events, etc.. A copy of a sculpture should be clearly marked as such.
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