In a city as visually restrained as Florence, every detail of decoration stands out. In the Middle Ages and Renaissance, Florentine builders combined their passion for geometry with their love of making a little go a long way; they embellished buildings with simple geometrical designs. Though nothing special in themselves, they stand out like mystic hieroglyphs, symbols upon which to meditate while contemplating old Florence’s remarkable journey through the western mind. The city is full of them, incorporated into façades, mosaics, windows and friezes. Here are eight of them, a little exercise for the eye while tramping the hard pavements of Florence. Your job is to find them.
Some are really obvious, others obscure. For No.6 you should be able to find at least three examples (two across the street from each other) and if you’re clever you’ll find not only No.5, a rather late addition to the cityscape, but also the medieval work that inspired it.
Don’t worry too much about the last one. But if you’re an art historian or a Florentinophile, it’s only fair that you seek out this hard one too. Answers are below.
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