Florence 10

Florence Episode 10 Piazza della Signoria

The bonfire of the vanities

We visit the Piazza della Signoria, the square from which Florence was ruled from about 1300 and take a peek at some of its artworks, such as the statue of Duke Cosimo I, the Neptune Fountain and a replica of Michelangelo’s David. Some tales from the square’s history include the story of Girolamo Savonarola, the fiery monk whose impassioned preaching captivated so many Florentines in the late 15th century. His ‘bonfire of the vanities’ saw the burning of a huge pile of objects which he deemed irreligious – pictures, books, items of clothing he thought frivolous – but not long afterwards, Savonarola himself was accused of heresy and burned to death at the stake in the very same spot.