The coat of arms of the Medici: myths and legends!

The coat of arms of the most famous family of Florence in the world is represented with six whispering or five balls enameled of red and one larger blue with three lilies that is found almost on all the Florentine palaces but still today its origins are various.

According to an ancient legend of a manuscript by a family member of Giovanni de' Medici the balls are to represent the footprints left by the clava of a giant arrived in Tuscany following Charles de Great.

According to other myths it is believed that the balls are medicinal or the truest one dates back to the transfer of the family to Florence from Mugello and enrolled in one of the major arts of the city, the Art of Exchange ,whose coat of arms is represented by a red shield with colored “bisanti” on it.

These were gold coins, the florins, minted in Byzantium and which were produced in Europe after the capture of the city of Constantinople by the Crusaders and the family had from this trait their coat of arms inverting only the colors.

But I prefer the story that binds the balls to the plants of oranges and lemons that the Medici considered ornamental plants and that are preserved in the colder months inside the limonaia of the Boboli Garden over 500 plants.

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