Vlad the Impaler declares himself reigning Prince of Wallachia for the third and last time. He was killed on the march to Bucharest, probably before the end of December. His head was sent to his old enemy Sultan Mehmed of the Ottomans.
Certain animals arrived here, which were supposed to have been sent by the sultan; afterwards we heard, however, that they came from some good friends of Florence, who hoped to be duly rewarded. The animals were as follows: A very tall giraffe, beautiful and graceful; her picture can be seen painted in many parts of Florence, as she lived here for many years. Also a large lion, a goat, and some very strange wethers.
The aforesaid ambassador of the sultan presented to the Signoria the giraffe, lion, and other beasts; and he sat in the midst of the Signoria, on the ringhiera, he speaking and they thanking him by means of an interpreter. A great crowd had collected in the Piazza that morning to see this. The ringhiera was decorated with spalliere(1) and carpets, and all the principal citizens had taken their places upon it. This ambassador remained here several months, and was maintained at our cost and presented with many gifts.
(1) Spalliere were pieces of linen or wool, painted or embroidered, to hang on the wall behind seats. (Trans.)