A chancellor of Count Girolamo was hung at the windows of the Bargello. He had been captured by one of the Altoviti,(1) who was a proscribed rebel, and in order to be pardoned, found out this man, and caught him between Piombino and Pisa; and he won his pardon.
(1) This must have been the famous Cola Montano, a Bolognese; not a chancellor, but maintained by Count Girolamo Riario, and the Pope, and the King of Naples, and all the enemies of Florence, during the war following the Conspiracy of the Pazzi. That he was taken by one of the Altoviti is not mentioned elsewhere. Brought to Florence, he was put in the prison of the Bargello or Captain of the Piazza dei Signori; where he wrote with his own hand a Confessione, which is preserved in the State Archives of Florence, amongst the Carte Strozziane, still unedited, but well worth publishing, as important contributions to the history of that time. The order of the Signori e Collegi to the Otto di Custodia e Balia, of the 12th March, for the execution of Montano, still exist in the said archives amongst the papers of these magistrates. (Trans.)
Lorenzo and Giovanni, sons of Piero Francesco de' Medici, were detained in the Palagio; and it was said that some wished them to be put to death, but the reason was not given. On the 29th they were liberated; and on the 14th May they went away, being restricted within certain boundaries.(1)
(1) Florentine historians give as the motive of such provisions a dissension between these Medici and Piero, but disagree as to its causes. Contemporary writers, however, point to their too close adherence to the King of France. I hoped to throw some light upon this matter from the documents, but a deliberation of the Signori and Collegi of the 29th April, 1494, by which they are condemned for life to remain a mile outside the city, only has these words: justis causis, ut dixerunt moti, et ad Statum multum pertinentibus, etc. And nother on the 9th November, which permits them to return begins thus: Attenta humanitate et bonis moribus Laurentii et Ioannis Pier Francisci de Mediciis et qualiter, contra justicia et omne debitum, et ad instantiam tirannorum, fuerunt relegati, etc. They actually left the city on the 14th May, as Landucci says, that is, fifteen days after the deliberation, as it had been decreed; and on the day following, the proof of their presence beyond the boundary fixed was produced, they having gone to inhabit the villa of Castello (Libro di deliberazioni ad annum of the Signori e Collegi, in the State Archives of Florence.)
Our Lady of Santa Maria Impruneta was brought into the city, in hopes that the rain might cease: and our prayers were granted.(1)
(1) It was decreed on the 13th of the same month that this image should be brought, and on the 14th some of the Collegi were chosen and charged with making suitable arrangements.
A proclamation was published by the Signoria, obliging everyone to give lodging to the French; and assuring them that nothing would be touched or taken away.(1) Most people were not pleased, because the Signoria showed more fear than was needful; they might have waited till any trouble began, although it was unpleasant for us. But God never removed His hand from off our head, because He heard the tears, and sighs, and prayers of His servants, who walk in truth, and who pray to Him all the day long that He should be merciful to the good and upright of heart, and to those who love the honour and glory of God above all things, praising Him in adversity as in prosperity, and desire nothing but to fulfil His will.
(1) I find that on the 11th November the Signori e Collegi decreed: Quod nullus audeat resistere aperire et reserrare domum suam quin gentes Regis Francorum possint capere lodiamenta et habere receptum. Significando cuilibet persone quod nulli erit facta aliqua iniuria.
A parlamento was held in the Piazza de' Signori at about 22 in the evening (6 p.m.), and all the Gonfaloni came into the Piazza, each with his respective citizens behind him unarmed. But there were a number of armed men placed at all the ways leading into the Piazza; and many articles and statutes were read out, which formed several folios. Before beginning the reading it was asked whether two-thirds of the citizens were present; and the bystanders said that it was so. Then the reading began, and it was declared in the said articles that all the laws from 1434 onwards were annulled, and that the Settanta, the Dieci, and the Otto di Balia were also abolished, and that the government must be carried on by the Council of the People and the Commune, and that the balloting-bags must be closed and the names drawn by lot, as was usual in communes; and an election should take place as soon as possible. For the present, twenty of the noblest and ablest men should be appointed who would do the work of the Signoria and the other offices, together with the Signori and Collegi, until the election should be arranged. And the citizens must be content with the result of the ballot. And the said twenty men should among them, who should attend to the war with Pisa and to other necessary things.(1)
(1) Many of the things decreed in this assembly are merely a confirmation of the orders given by the Signoria in November, and to which it was wished to give a ceremonious sanction. The offices entirely abolished were the Consiglio del Cento (Council of the Hundred, appointed under Lorenzo after 1480); the Settanta (the Seventy, also instituted under Lorenzo; both these acted as if they had full powers, without summoning an assembly); the Dodici Procuratori (chosen from the Seventy every six months, who looked after internal affairs); the Otto di Pratica (also chosen from the Seventy every six months, who were ministers of foreign affairs), and the Accoppiatori (these ten officials were only appointed during the time of the elections, and had gradually usurped more and more power under Lorenzo). The rest were only reformed.
(1) The original provision (see Reg. di Prow, ad an.) is entitled Lex pads et appelationis sex fabarum Provosio, and contains arrangements for the peace, as the Diary says; which consist in an indulgence, or amnesty as we should now say, within certain limits, for anyone who had favoured the Government in power till the 9th November. There is also an article which ordains that anyone eligible for office who for some reason of State has been condemned by the Signori or the Otto di Balia or di Guardia to death, confinement, banishment, or imprisonment, or to a fine above 300 (large) florins, can and may appeal to the Great Council," and be absolved by them with certain ceremonies. And it is this, I think, that was meant by doing away with the authority of the six fave, i.e. the six votes with which the Signori or the Otto could condemn.