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Leopoldo de' Medici (6 November, 161716 November 1675) was an Italian Cardinal, scholar and patron of the arts. He was the brother of Ferdinando II de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany.


Leopoldo de' Medici was born in Florencemarker. He was educated under Jacopo Soldano, father Flaviano Michelini and Evangelista Torricelli. When his brother was elected Grandduke, Leopoldo acted as his advisor for manufactures, agriculture and trades.

He took a great interest in science and technology. In 1638 he founded the Accademia Platonica, and, together with Ferdinando, the Accademia del Cimento ("Academy of the Daring") in 1657 to promote observation of nature through the Galilei Method. In 1641 Leopoldo had been named member of the Accademia della Crusca, for which he edited the entries regardin art for the 3rd edition of the Crusca Dictionary (1691).

Leopoldo was also a great collectionist of rare books, paintings (the Venetian collection at the Uffizimarker is largely a heritage of him), drawings, statues, coins and self-portraits. He left a wide correspondence with artists and collectionists of the time

On december 12 1667 Pope Clement IX named him cardinal of San Cosma e Damiano. From that point on Leopoldo made frequent trips to Romemarker, pursuing his artistical interests. He died in 1675. His large collections were included to the several museums of Florencemarker.

Leopoldo had a longer letter correspondence with Christiaan Huygens.


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