Florence is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany and of the province of Florence. It is the most populous city in Tuscany, with approximately 370,000 inhabitants, expanding to over 1.5 million in the metropolitan area. Florence is famous for its history: a centre of medieval... MORE
Florence is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany and of the province of Florence. It is the most populous city in Tuscany, with approximately 370,000 inhabitants, expanding to over 1.5 million in the metropolitan area. Florence is famous for its history: a centre of medieval European trade and finance and one of the wealthiest cities of the time, it is considered the birthplace of the Renaissance, and has been called "the Athens of the Middle Ages". A turbulent political history includes periods of rule by the powerful Medici family, and numerous religious and republican revolutions. From 1865-71 the city was the capital of the recently established Kingdom of Italy. The Historic Centre of Florence attracts millions of tourists each year, and Euromonitor International ranked the city as the world's 72nd most visited in 2009, with 1.7m visitors. It was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1982. The city is noted for its culture, Renaissance art and architecture and monuments. The city also contains numerous museums and art galleries, such as the Uffizi Gallery and the Palazzo Pitti, and still exerts an influence in the fields of art, culture and politics. LESS
Matteo Renzi is a fast talker, fast-mover who has rocketed to the peak of Italian politics after being tapped Monday to try to form Italy's next government. Here's what distinguishes the Democratic leader from the rest of Italy's political class. Renzi is a politician from Tuscany with — in his own words — oversized ambition. Just a decade ago, he was elected to his first post, president of Florence province. In 2009 Florentines elected him their mayor. His campaign slogan in the local Democratic Party primary for that post: "Either I change Florence or I change careers."
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