The origins of San Lorenzo coincide with the origins of the Christian community in Florence. According to tradition, the fist basilica, the most ancient Florentine cathedral, was consecrated to Saint Ambrose in 393 and dedicated to the martyr Lorenzo.
There is no longer any trace of this early building; the imposing basilica we see today is the fruit of radical renovations begun in 1418 by Giovanni di Bicci, forefather of the Medici family.
Since then, San Lorenzo’s history has been indissolubly tied to that of the dynasty that for over 300 years governed Florence and Tuscany: in the Medici family’s official church were celebrated the weddings, christenings, and funerals of its members, here the Medici attended state ceremonies, here they buried all their dead, up to the last descendant, Anna Maria Luisa.
Photo and video shooting are forbidden in the interior of the monumental area without prior authorization, following a written application and the payment of royalties, which must be forwarded to the offices of the OML. In the request, the intended use should be specified (if for study or commercial purposes), and in any case a copy of the pictures or of the video, or of the publication to which they are destined should be sent to OML.