name of a family of rich, powerful bankers, merchants, & rulers of Florence & Tuscany in the 14th, 15th, & 16th cent., also noted as patrons of art & literature
- Medici, Catherine de' 1519-89; queen of Henry II of France (1547-59)Fr. name
- Medici, Cosimo de' 1389-1464; head of the Florentine Republic: called the Elder
- Medici, Cosimo I de' 1519-74; grand duke of Tuscany (1569-74): called the Great
- Medici, Lorenzo de' 1449-92; ruler of Florence (1469-92): called the Magnificent
- Medici, Maria de' 1573-1642; queen of Henry IV of France (1600-10): queen regent (1610-17)Fr. name
Italian noble family that produced three popes (Leo X, Clement VII, and Leo XI) and two queens of France (Catherine de Médicis and Marie de Médicis). Cosimo “the Elder” (1389–1464) was the first of the family to rule Florence. Lorenzo “the Magnificent” (1449–1492) was an outstanding patron of learning and the arts, whose clients included Michelangelo and Botticelli.