9/19 Palazzo Medici Riccardi

After leaving the market, we passed this church...we didn't stop in as mass was being conducted...it was Sunday, after all...
Just a short stroll later, we came upon the Palazzo Medici Riccardi - their little 15th century place housing one of the best-known frescoes of all time which features, oh yeah...the Medicis in all their glory - created by Benozzo Gozzoli - under the narrative of "Procession of the Magi" in the Chapel of the Palazzo with family members, along with their allies, associates, and illustrious guests, portraying various subjects in the frescoes - I've put a picture from Allhistory's webpage of the most famous of the frescoes at the end of my pictures because photographs were not allowed in the chapel...everywhere else pictures were fine and there was a LOT to see!

More information on the frescoes and the personages therein can be found at http://all-history.org/253.html as well as at
Here is the picture of the main wall:


9/19 Flower Market

One of the side streets from the Duomo piazza contained a flower market, and since the rain had ceased and the temperature was awesome*, we strolled down that way; stopping for refreshment and then continuing on...

* bear in mind that at home on this same date, temperatures were still in the mid90s, so 78 sort of rocked!


Sunday 9/19 - Duomo

After breakfast, even though it was a rainy day, we headed for the Piazza del Duomo (you can see the church behind us in our photo on the left -we are up on the Piazza dl Michaelangelo)...

 The Duomo is at the very end of the street...

Briefly passing by the Church of St. Maria Maggiore (more later...)

The street opens up into the Plaza...
a brief note re the Duomo (from Wikipedia)...
The Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore is the cathedral church (Duomo) of Florence, Italy, begun in 1296 in the Gothic style to the design of Arnolfo di Cambio and completed structurally in 1436 with the dome engineered by Filippo Brunelleschi. The exterior of the basilica is faced with polychrome marble panels in various shades of green and pink bordered by white and has an elaborate 19th century Gothic Revival facade by Emilio De Fabris.  The cathedral complex, located in Piazza del Duomo, includes the Baptistery and Giotto's Campanile. The three buildings are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site covering the historic centre of Florence and are a major attraction to tourists visiting the region of Tuscany. The basilica is one of Italy's largest churches, and until the modern era, the dome was the largest in the world. It remains the largest brick dome ever constructed.
We chose not to go into the Basilica (I know, I know...full of famous art blah blah) - but entering every church or museum in the city is not enjoyable unless you can give each one it's own special day, so we were very selective on what we saw...and we have guidebooks galore that we bought everywhere so we can read more about what we did see...these surroundings kept us entertained for well over an hour just wandering around the buildings (and did I mention that the Basilica is covered in heraldry?) and we did, indeed, circumnavigate every building there as far as physically possible! 

While Dave was making sure he got several shots of every coat of arms, I studied the artwork and the patterns...can you see why a quilter like myself might just really enjoy the Duomo?  I found the juxtaposition of so many patterns together to be very inspiring.



Travel-Heraldry-Art Note

Ok - forgive the travel blog interruption (again) - but this has to be noted...if you've never heard of them, please look up and read about the Medici family - in Florence, especially in the 15th century - they either owned it or owned the mortgage on it - whatever it is...um...was.  More powerful than world governments and richer than Gates & Trump together, they were a force "to be reckoned with", as my folks would say.  So, for all you heraldry lovers who usually spend most of their time on Dave's blog, I give you the Medici - as taken on that first full day in less than a three hour period (there are more...but I think this illustrates my point...)
Their arms were everywhere in all the permutations... I'm sure not all of them were period - in some cases it was the city/powers-that-be deciding that during some restoration and "enhancement" that it was something that would appropriately embellish the building (window, door, roof, rug or floor etc etc) and make it look more medieval (because I'm sure that it can be historically proven that the family had something to do with the edifice at some point...did I mention that they were pretty-much all powerful?). 

Dave, of course, has all the heraldry pictures, and I'm sure he will address the Medicis.  But I just had to give you one example of why Dave literally inched his way around the Old City...


Saturday 9/18 - part 2

Ok - it's getting tougher to narrow down my picture choices!  We spent our first afternoon in Florence walking around and just looking near the hotel and going through the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella - overwhelming in both heraldry and famous art.  These are from the exterior on the first day (a real postcard-shot later in the week...):
It didn't take us long to figure out two things about Florence:  it's full of great things to look at and the amount of heraldry is overwhelming...trust me, we could not go ten feet down a street without Dave stopping to take shots of heraldry on the sides of buildings, on the corners, on windows, on doors, etc etc...so much so that even he said he was getting burned out by the end of the week!  But here are some of the non-heraldic things we enjoyed seeing on our first afternoon:

there are a lot of Dragon flagposts, lamp holders, rings (I haven't figured out what these are for), and even torch holders all over the Old Part of the City...guess even Florence thinks they are medieval looking...
these lampposts are all over town, too...somebody
made a hefty commission on the sale to the city, I'm guessing....slightly grotesque...

Painted facades abound as well - I've ordered a book about them becauase I'm sure they aren't much older than 18th century at most...

and as in any tourist attraction, you can buy ANYTHING in the street stalls....


Saturday 9/18 - part 1

The flight from Stuttgart to Florence was uneventful - just the way I prefer all airflight to be...I was able to capture a Man at Work picture for Margaret:
And the flight also gave me an opportunity to enjoy the landscape we overflew...I look forward to using some of these in some future fiber work..


Thurs 9/16 and Friday 9/17

The last two days in Stuttgart were lectures, shopping, invading restaurants in large groups, and the final banquet (which, without our help, went on to 4 a.m.!...there was much alcohol involved...we left before midnight...).  But it was great to see good friends and we had a marvelous time at the Congress.  We look forward to two years from now when it's held in The Netherlands.







Fortunately, other people caught us on camera!  Thanks to Harald Heimbach for posting these!