The Medici Family: Stories Of The Most Important Family You've Never Heard Of

By Karen Harris
Lorenzo the Magnificent (1585-1644) with the major artists of the time, in a 1635 fresco by Ottavio Vannini. (Photo by DeAgostini/Getty Images)

Before the Rockefellers, the Kennedys, and the Kardashians, there was the Medici family. Between 1434 and 1737, the Medici family ruled the cultural hub of Italy at a time when Italy was the cultural hub of the world, amassing a huge fortune. They influenced art, music, architecture, commerce, business, banking, politics, nobility, and religion. How did one family become so important? And what happened to end their reign? Let's look at some of the stories of the Medici family, the most important family you've never heard of.