(b. 1396, Firenze, d. 1472, Firenze)

Palazzo Medici Riccardi: Exterior

Via Camillo Cavour, Florence

The palace Michelozzo designed for Cosimo de' Medici is striking in its use of extremely heavy rusticated masonry on the ground story, which gives the building a fortress-like aspect - softened in the increasingly refined treatment of surface on the stories above. The rustication of the lower story is typical of Florentine palazzi of the fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries. Yet the extreme heaviness of the rustication and the double lancet windows of the upper stories can be found elsewhere only at the Palazzo della Signoria.

The construction of the Palazzo was started in 1445, commissioned by Cosimo de' Medici (Il Vecchio), and it was also to serve the Medicis as an administration building in which to conduct their extensive financial and business concerns. During the 17th century, the Riccardi family acquired the palace and commissioned numerous renovations and extensions.

View the ground plan of Palazzo Medici Riccardi, Florence.