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The Medici: From Popes to Dukes

Art-full Fridays

Afternoon Lecture/Seminar

Friday, March 18, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET
Code: 1H0676
This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.
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"Gian Gastone", last Medici Grand Duke of Tuscany by Franz Ferdinand Richter

Spend a fascinating Friday with art historian Elaine Ruffolo as she explores the influence of the powerful Medici family.

The date 1494 is traditionally cited as the end of the Medici family’s golden age in Florence. But that's not to say that their legacy ended there. With an eye towards real power, Lorenzo il Magnifico managed to procure a cardinalship for his son Giovanni de' Medici, who eventually was elected Pope Leo X in 1513. Close on his heels was his cousin, Giulio de' Medici, who was elected Pope Clement VII in 1523. The period of the Medici popes was fraught with corruption, intrigue, and violence—even as great artists including Michelangelo and Raphael benefitted from Medici patronage. By 1537, the Medici became the dukes of Florence, a royal reign that would continue until 1743.

Follow Ruffolo, who catches up with the family as they seek to occupy the papal seat in Rome and the duke's throne in Florence.

World Art History Certificate elective: Earn 1/2 credit*

Note: There is another Medici program on Friday, March 4, 2022.

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*Enrolled participants in the World Art History Certificate Program receive 1/2 elective credit. Not yet enrolled? Learn about the program, its benefits, and how to register here.