By Herm. Ign. Bidermann
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For this the plot about to unfold. quent role of the family to reading of Salvestro's character there is entirely insufficient justification in the He belonged to a family which, beginning with the thirteenth century, had been steadily coming to the front by the usual avenue of trade and which by the fourteenth century had gained a secure position among the popolo grasso by its merchant enterprise coupled with its strict adherence to Guelph principles. While there were many Florentine families both richer and more prominent, the Medici by Salvestro's time were already an "old" clan in the sense that for several generations their representatives had been admitted to all the offices of the republic.
Florence, 1888. // Tumulto dei Ciompi: Cronache e Memorie. ), Tomo XVIII, Parte 3. of 1378, HISTORY OF FLORENCE 2 8o not the great merchants were in the saddle, and the democratic experiment, inaugurated in 1343 and subjected to terrific strain in the summer of 1378, was found to have been salvaged when the storm was over. It continued to stamp its peculiar imprint on Florentine history for the next three years. In some respects this last phase of the Florentine democracy is its most interesting period, largely because the strengthened people were somewhat free to give effect to their peculiar purposes.
Which saw no reason for the spilling of blood, considering that, if they dis- campaign, they could count on an easy existence at the expense of their unarmed employers. Aside from the occasional brutal excesses of a soldiery that could not always be kept under control, there are really no military events for the historian to chronicle. Moreover, in view of the unreliable character of their troops, the Florentines were prudent enough to count on winning the war not so much by fighting as by diplomacy.