A certain hermit came here to preach and threatened many ills. He had been at Volterra, serving at a leper hospital. He was a lad of twenty-four, barefoot, with a wallet on his back; and he declared that St. John and the Angel Raphael had appeared to him. And one morning he went up on to the ringhierra of the Signori to preach, but the "Eight" sent him away. And each day some incident happened.
(1) This was Ludovico Sforza, called Il Moro, uncle to the reigning duke, and at that moment exiled.
Piero de' Medici went to meet the Duke of Calabria, in the neighbourhood of Arezzo, to visit him, as one visits a great gentleman, a lord. The French ambassadors who were in Florence, having asked for their safe-conduct, and not receiving it at once, when they knew of this journey of Piero's began to suspect us of not being friendly to their king; at least this was said in the city, and it was said that the king threatened the Florentines. It was difficult to persuade them that we were faithful friends, and that their suspicions were without foundation. All this, however, I only heard by report.
In these days the fleet of the King of France arrived at Genoa, and there was much talk of an encounter.
The fleet of the King of Naples was defeated at Rapallo by that King of France and the Genoese; not in an encounter, but the Neapolitan fleet rashly landed 3 thousand soldiers, thinking to take Rapallo; and in the end they were cut off by the Genoese and the king, and could not return to their ships. They fled towards the mountains, and were all killed or taken prisoner; the fleet of the King of Naples being disarmed and destroyed.
We heard that the King of France had entered Genoa, and that the Genoese were preparing to receive him with great honour, having decorated the whole city, and even taken down the gates and laid them on the ground, to show more splendour and to ensure the king's safety. But it was not true that the king was going there, although they expected him and had made all the preparations. It was said that he felt distrustful of the citizens.
The Genoese enter into negotiations for a colossal statue of Andrea Doria, which they desired to obtain from the hand of Michelangelo. Its execution must have been seriously contemplated, for the Senate of Genoa banked 300 ducats for the purpose.