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Top sights in Florence
Michelangelo's masterpiece is one of the world's most recognizable sculptures. Located at Florence's Galleria dell'Accademia di Firenze, tours of the museum reveal a defining moment in Renaissance art – but there's a fascinating history behind David too!
Originally intended to stand among other stone sculptures on the cathedral's roof, the 6-ton statue was too heavy to raise. It was placed outside the Palazzo Vecchio instead.
The sculpture was started by Agostino di Duccio in 1463, before work briefly continued under a soon-fired Antonio Rossellino. Michelangelo was employed to finish the work in 1501.
David's confident stare is directed towards Firenze's strongest rival -- Rome. The city was one of many neighboring powers that threatened the Republic of Florence's sovereignity.
David was wrapped in cloth and entombed in brick as part of Italian efforts to protect their historic artworks from bomb damage. Michelangelo's Moses received the same treatment!
In 1991 Piero Cannata attacked the statue with a hammer he'd concealed under his jacket, breaking the second toe of the left foot. Police described the 47-year-old as "deranged."
The Galleria dell'Accademia is open between 8:15AM and 6:50PM from Tuesday to Sunday.
The Galleria dell'Accademia can be easily reached by many different bus routes to the stops Ss. Annunziata - Istituto Degli Innocent, Piazza di San Marco, San Marco Rettorato, or Cavour. Michelangelo's David is located in the museum's Hall of the Prisoners.
- When should I visit?
- Tues - Sun: 8:15AM - 6:50PM
- Is it expensive?
- Around 15 Euros. Price varies whether you book online or purchase at the ticket office.
- Will I need a guide?
- Not necessarily, but consider this... is there anything better in the world than an enthusiastic Italian tour guide?
- How to get there
- Florence is rather walkable so you easily go there by foot. Numerous bus lines also stop in front of the Galleria.
- Additional information
- Make sure to pre-book your tickets! The David is an especially popular attraction.
What people are saying about Michelangelo's David
I am so glad that I booked this tour. I knew it was a good idea to at least make reservations to get into the Accademia first thing in the morning, but having a guided tour was definitely worth it. I had a little bit of trouble finding my group - because it was so small! - there were only two other people besides myself, and then our guide, Leonardo. Our guide was amazing and gave us really great insight into Florence history and background on Michelangelo and the Medici Family while we waited in line. We were literally the first few people into the museum and it was truly incredible and awe inspiring. I would definitely, definitely recommend this tour/experience to anyone looking to maximize their time in Florence, make a somewhat confusing museum a little bit less confusing, and have a wonderful learning opportunity at the same time.
We arrived on time and were shown right into the Academmia. The exhibits were excellent but most of all we appreciated the good service online and at the Academmia.
Our tour guide was knowledgeable and passionate about her job. She was inspiring and made us appreciate the history and beauty of Michelangelo's masterpiece
Francesca made our experience of the David and Michelangelo so interesting and fun. So much more meaningful than just going and looking at sculptures!
I can express the warmth and passion and insight that Alda impressed upon us during our tour! She’s a first rate tour guide!!!