The Complex

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.

The Basilica

Giovanni di Bicci, forefather of the Medici family, entrusted Filippo Brunelleschi with the reconstruction of the San Lorenzo basilica. He managed the huge construction site until his death in 1446. In 1461 the project was completed by Brunelleschi’s biographer and heir, Antonio Manetti. Despite some interventions in the 18th...

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The Medici Chapels

The Medici Chapels (Cappelle Medicee) complex, which may be reached through the apse area of the San Lorenzo Basilica, includes the lavish Mausoleum of the Princes (Mausoleo dei Principi) and Michelangelo’s New Sacristy (Sagrestia Nuova), designed as the Medici family funeral chapel.   The New Sacristy Conceived by Pope...

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The Medicea Laurenziana Library

Commissioned by Pope Clement VII, a Medici, to house the family’s precious collection of manuscripts, the Medicea Laurenziana Library (Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana) was designed by Michelangelo, who personally directed the works from 1523 to 1534, the year in which he moved to Rome. The library was completed in 1571...

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Download the Opera Medicea Laurenziana app

Fifteen video clips, more than 50 high-resolution photographs, three-dimensional reconstructions of the basilica, the monumental outbuildings and 3 projects of the facade of Giuliano da Sangallo, Raphael and Michelangelo. You can have it for free by asking our staff inside the Basilica or or by downloading it from the store.

Available for smartphones and tablets

Online Tickets

You can buy your ticket online, you will be entitled to skip any queues at the ticket office.

Closed on:

Friday 12th May all day
Thursday 25th May mornign
Monday 29th May all day