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Laurentian Library

Listed under Urban in Florence, Italy.

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Photo by Arnie Westman
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La Biblioteca Mediceo Laurenziana is considered a prototype of mannerism. Located in the cloisters of San Lorenzo, the long room with reading desks houses around 11,000 manuscripts and old books, distinctive from the other buildings by the extensive row of windows between pilasters (which correspond to the ceiling beams). The monumental vestibule is much larger, square plan, filled with a staircase from the library. There is a pattern of 15 terracotta floor tiles, in both red and white, which display basic geometric principles, typical of Michaelangelo, which were designed to be on display. With the addition of more desks, this feature has been largely obscured.

Written by  George Monkhouse.

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