Episode 2 The Magnificent Medici


From a small Italian community in 15th century Florence the Medici family would rise to rule Europe in many ways. Using charm, patronage, skill, duplicity and ruthlessness, they would amass unparalleled wealth and unprecedented power. They would also ignite the most important cultural and artistic revolution in Western history – the European Renaissance. But the forces of change the Medici helped unleash would one day topple their ordered world.
Episode 1 The Birth of a Dynasty – Europe, 1400 A continent torn apart by war and plague is dominated by the authority of the Catholic Church. In the towns and cities live merchants and entrepreneurs who sense that their world is changing. With increasing trade and wealth an appetite for enlightenment develops. No longer neglected in the shadows of the Church, classical philosophy, poetry, art and sculpture begin to reach a new audience. This is especially true in cosmopolitan cities like Florence, home of Cosimo de’Medici.
Episode 2 The Magnificient Medici – Florence, August 1466 Lorenzo de’Medici, the 17 year old heir to the dynasty, foils a murderous plot against his father and saves his family from a coup d’etat. The Medici still dominate Florence, but now take extra precautions, picking a useful bride for Lorenzo. Clarice Orsini, a baron’s daughter and cardinal’s niece, brings connections, class, and military muscle to the Medici dynasty. In the workshops of Florence, business has never been better. Under Medici patronage, artists like Sandro Botticelli go on to redefine the Renaisssance itself. For now, Botticelli’s “Adoration of the Magi” confirms his position at the heart of Medici power.
Episode 3 The Medici Popes – Florence1501 26 year old Michelangelo carves a giant masterpiece which will come to symbolize his struggle against a family he once adored. Raised from a young age alongside the Medici heirs he watched as they were cast into exile with a price on their heads. Now they are searching for a path back to power.
Episode 4 Power VS. Truth – Florence, 1537 Alessandro de’Medici the Duke of Florence, lies murdered in his bed. His cousin is plucked from obscurity to lead Florence. He is just 17. His rivals think he’s a puppet, but despite his youth, Cosimo de’Medici, the new Duke of Florence, is ambitious.