The Medici family were bankers and merchants who had great influence over the city of Florence during the Renaissance

The Medici family were bankers and merchants who had great influence over the city of Florence during the Renaissance. They controlled the Medici bank, which at its peak was the largest bank in Europe. The House Of Medici rose to power around the time of Giovanni de Medici who began the Medici bank and became leader of the merchants in Florence. His son Cosimo continued the family’s rise to power by becoming the leader of Florence.
The Medici were renowned for their patronage of art throughout the Renaissance, and are said to be the reason why Florence became such a centre of the Renaissance in Italy. Lorenzo de Medici followed in Cosimos’s footsteps and ruled Florence though the peak of the Renaissance. He supported many artists including the now famous Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci.
The powerful family ruled Florence until its decline in the late fifteenth century. In its time, the Medici family rose to positons of power throughout Europe.
The Medici have been called the “godfathers of the Renaissance.” Their accumulation of power in the early fifteenth century in Florence was orchestrated by Cosimo de’ Medici even though his family started with less wealth and political clout than other families in the oligarchy that ruled Florence at the time.
During this time the Medici (with Cosimo de’ Medici playing the key role) rose in power and largely consolidated control of business and politics in Florence.