florence archaeological museum. museo archeologico nazionale firenze, italy

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  The Archaeological Museum  

Address: Via della Colonna, 36

Archaeological Museum, Florence: Chimera of Arezzo Like many other Florentine Museums, the Archaeological Museum's sources lie in the Grand Ducal Collections, both of the Medici and the House of Lorraine. Originally shown with other art treasures in the Uffizi, the museum's collections have been shown in their present setting since 1888, slowly building on the richest section, that of Etruscan civilization. As early as the fifteenth century, Cosimo the Elder de' Medici had begun the collection of works in marble and bronze together with humble terracotta crockery, urns and other curiosities.

Again it was Cosimo I who first seriously began to collect such things in the sixteenth century. His successor added such notable works as the Chimera of Arezzo, the Minerva of Arezzo and the Orator. Cardinal Leopoldo de' Medici in the seventeenth century was a particularly assiduous collector who persistently enriched the collections. The House of Lorraine continued, and to them we owe the formation of the very important Egyptian section made up in the main of objects recovered on a Franco-Tuscan expedition early in the nineteenth century.

The Austrian Grand Dukes devoted them selves to the Etruscan section, which was already at that time ordered in series and studied by their court antiquarian. Collecting continued throughout the nineteenth century with important additions like the Sarcophagus of the Amazons or that of Larthia Seianti. To this period belong the initial arrangement of the section of Etruscan topography, of Etruscan sculpture and of the bronzes large and small. Also in the Museum are found glass, precious gems, numerous Greek ceramics and a mixed collection of coins.

Archaeological Museum Reservation

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