II., Pope. Niccolo' 'Nicholas' b. 1010 d. July 27, 1061 Pope. A Burgundian named Gerard, who at the time of his election was bishop of Florence. In his short pontificate (1058 to 1061) Niccolo' II did much. He renewed the election decrees in 1061. He condemned Berengarius, a Frenchman who denied transubstantiation. He fostered reform by means of energetic legates; and he made Hildebrand, reform's greatest champion, archdeacon of the Roman church. (Bio by: MC) Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Alighieri, Dante [cenotaph] b. May 22, 1265 d. September 14, 1321 Author. Born Durante Alighieri in Florence, Italy the son of Alighiero di Bellincione Alighieri, a notary, and his first wife. His studies included rhetoric, grammar, philosophy, literature , theology, philosophy, and theology. In 1293 he joined the guild of physicians and apothecaries in order to gain entry into the political life of the city. About that same year he published 'Vita Nuova' a combination of lyrical verse and poetic prose telling the story of his love for Beatrice. About 1295 he...[Read More] (Bio by: Iola) Basilica di Santa Croce, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Annigoni, Pietro b. June 7, 1910 d. October 28, 1988 Artist. A native of Milan, Italy, he is most notable for his portrait paintings of beggars, and for his 1955 portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, which has been used on several colonial banknotes including the 1968 Rhodesian note. His portrait of Queen Elizabeth II hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in London, England. Known for his style of Italian Renaissance, he was a contrast to the modernist and post-modernist artistic styles of the middle and late 20th century. Among his other works was...[Read More] (Bio by: K) Cimitero Monumentale di San Miniato al Monte, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Bacci, Cardinal. Antonio b. September 4, 1885 d. January 20, 1971 Roman Catholic Cardinal. Considered by many as the greatest Latin prodigy of the twentieth century, Giugnola born Antonio Bacci entered seminary in Florence and was ordained priest there on August 9, 1909. Faculty member and spiritual director of the named seminary between 1910 and 1922, an expert Latinist as he was, Bacci was appointed staff member of the Secretariat of State of the Vatican City in 1922, serving as the longtime secretary of Briefs to the Princes between 1931 and 1960, holding...[Read More] (Bio by: Eman Bonnici) Chiesa Parrocchiale di Giugnola, Giugnola, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Baker, Addison Earl [memorial] b. January 1, 1907 d. August 1, 1943 World War II Congressional Medal of Honor recipient. Born in Chicago, Illinois, he was a National Guard officer who had been called to active duty in 1940. By 1943, he was a Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army Air Corps and commander of the 93rd Heavy Bombardment Group, Eighth Air Force, assigned to Benghazi, North Africa. It was from this point that he led his group as part of a daring low level attack against enemy oil refineries and installations at Ploesti, Romania, on August 1, 1943. Approaching...[Read More] (Bio by: John "J-Cat" Griffith) Florence American Cemetery and Memorial, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy Plot: Body was never recovered.
Benelli, Cardinal. Giovanni b. May 12, 1921 d. October 26, 1982 Roman Catholic Cardinal. Poggiole di Vernio born Giovanni Benelli was the youngest of the five surviving children of Luigi Benelli and Maria Simoni. His uncle, Friar Guido Benelli entered the Order of Franciscan Friars Minor and died with fame of holiness. Entering seminary in Pistoia on October 18, 1931, he later moved to Rome to further studies at the Pontifical French Seminary, the Pontifical Gregorian University and the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy. Ordained priest on October 21, 1943...[Read More] (Bio by: Eman Bonnici) Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy Plot: Archbishopric Crypt Beneath The Chapel Of The Most Blessed Sacrament.
Boccaccio, Giovanni b. June 16, 1313 d. December 21, 1375 Author. The illegitimate son of a French noblewoman and a merchant from Florence, he became one of the most prolific writers of the late Middle Ages, best-known today for "The Decameron", which consists of 100 stories told over ten days, by seven young women and three young men who have taken a short respite from their native city Florence, which is in the throes of the Black Death. Boccaccio was close friends with the writer and thinker Petrarch, and was also very influenced in his writings by...[Read More] (Bio by: Carrie-Anne) Church of Saints Jacopo and Filippo, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Bonaparte, Julie b. December 26, 1771 d. April 7, 1845 Queen of Naples and Spain. Julie Clary was born in Marseille, France, the daughter of François Clary, a wealthy silk manufacturer and merchant, and his wife Françoise Rose Somis. The Clary sisters had ties to the Bonaparte family before their ascent to power, sister Desiree was engaged to Joseph Bonaparte before moving on to his brother Napoleon. Joseph married her sister Marie-Julie Clary instead on August 1, 1794 at Cuges. They had three daughters Julie Josephine Bonaparte who died as an...[Read More] (Bio by: Paul S.) Basilica di Santa Croce, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Botticelli (di Mariano Filipepi), Sandro (Allesandro) b. March 1, 1445 d. May 16, 1510 Artist. He was a contemporary of famed artist Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni and Renaissance man Leonardo da Vinci, and his considered one of the best painters of the 15th century period of art and culture in Italy known as the "Quattrocento". He was pupil of painter Filippo Lippi and worked for the House of Medici political dynasty. His works include the paintings "Adorazione del Magi," "Nascita di Venere" and "Allegoria de la Primavera." He also worked on the Sistine Chapel in the...[Read More] Abbazia Di Ognissanti, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Browning (Moulton), Elizabeth Barrett b. March 6, 1806 d. June 29, 1861 Poet. Born Elizabeth Moulton-Barrett at Cohnadatia Hall in Durham, England,, family wealth from Jamaican sugar plantations gave Elizabeth and her eleven brothers and sisters a privileged childhood. In her teens, she contracted a lung disorder, the nature of which is still speculated upon, and was treated as an invalid by her parents. In 1826 she published ‘An Essay on Mind and Other Poems' anonymously. After her father suffered financial losses which forced him to sell the family estate, the...[Read More] (Bio by: Iola) Cimitero Accatolico, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Buti, Carlo b. November 14, 1902 d. November 16, 1963 Italian Tenor. In the 1930s and the 40s, Carlo Buti had more entries in the Columbia catalogue in Italy than any other vocalist. He was the most recorded Italian voice on 78 rpm records, (around 800) and yet today he's virtually unremembered; he was appealing and the songs range through parlour romances, genuine Neapolitan ones and popular ballads of the time. (Bio by: Enrico Borsetti) Vecchio Cimitero, Montelupo Fiorentino, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy Plot: Buti Family Chapel
Caccini, Francesca b. September 18, 1587 d. 1640 (circa) Composer, Singer, Instrumentalist. Nicknamed "The Songbird", she was one of the most famous and versatile musicians of the the 17th Century. Her comedy "La liberazione di Ruggiero" (1625) was the first opera written by a woman and the first to be performed outside of Italy. The youngest daughter of singer-composer Giulio Caccini, she was born in Florence and sang at the Medici Court as a child, along with her sister Settimia. She received an excellent musical education and learned to play the...[Read More] (Bio by: Robert Edwards) Basilica della Santissima Annunziata, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy Plot: Caccini Family Vault
Caccini, Giulio b. October 8, 1551 d. December 10, 1618 Composer, Singer, Music Theorist. An important pioneer of early Baroque vocal music. His opera "Euridice" (1600) was the first ever to be published. Caccini was born in Rome and studied music in Florence under the patronage of Cosimo de Medici, who admired his singing. Around 1574 he joined the Florentine Cammerata Society, a group of intellectuals who upheld Ancient Greek art as a model for a new creative simplicity; under its influence he began writing songs in a monodic style, using a...[Read More] (Bio by: Bobb Edwards) Basilica della Santissima Annunziata, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Caccini, Settimia b. October 6, 1591 d. 1638 Singer, Composer. One of the first women to enjoy a successful career as a professional musician. The youngest daughter of singer-composer Giulio Caccini, she was born in Florence and sang at the Medici Court as a child, along with her sister Francesca. The family later formed the vocal group "Il Concerto Caccini" and entertained King Henri IV in Paris before going their seperate ways. Claudio Monteverdi invited Settimia to Mantua to create the role of Venus in his opera "Arianna" (1608)...[Read More] (Bio by: Robert Edwards) Basilica della Santissima Annunziata, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy Plot: Caccini Family Vault
Cellini, Benvenuto b. November 3, 1500 d. February 14, 1571 Artist. He was born in Florence, Italy. He is one of the greatest artists in the Western art, in the peak of Renaissance era. At nineteen, he went to Rome, where he worked for Popes Clement VII and Paul III, for whom he made jeweled ornaments and medallions. In 1536, he traveled to France, where he made the famous salt-cellar for King François I and sculpted decorations for the palace at Fontainebleau. In Florence, Cellini was supported by Duke Cosimo I de Medici. Cosimo's first commission was...[Read More] (Bio by: José L Bernabé Tronchoni) Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Clough, Arthur Hugh b. January 1, 1819 d. November 13, 1861 English poet. Clough was educated at Rugby and Balliol College, Oxford. He wrote a great deal of poetry but only two volumes appeared during his lifetime: "The Bothie of Tober-na-Vuolich" (1848) and "Ambarvalia" (1849). His posthumous poems include “Amours de Voyage,” the dialogues “Dypsichus,” and the tales “Mari Magno.” Clough is best known for the short lyric, “Say not the struggle naught availeth.” His death at the age of 42 was much mourned by those who had known and expected much of him. (Bio by: MC) Cimitero Accatolico, Florence, Provincia di Firenze, Toscana, Italy