The basilica of San Lorenzo in Florence was built in the 4th century and was originally dedicated to Saint Ambrogio. It was renovated in the Romanesque period, in 1059, and then rebuilt in the 15th century following a design by Filippo Brunelleschi under the patronage of the Medici family.
The Basilica was completed by his heir, Antonio Manetti, in 1461 and still today the church has preserved the harmony and perfect proportions desired by Brunelleschi.
Michelangelo would have had to finish the façade with marble, but the project wanted by Pope Leo X never started.
The Basilica preserves wonderful works of art, such as the 15th-century Old Sacristy of Filippo Brunelleschi, where you can admire the friezes with the episodes of San Giovanni Evangelista's life made by Donatello, who made also the bronze doors (15th century), the Pulpit of the Resurrection and Pulpit of the Pass.
The tombs of Giovanni and Piero dei Medici by Andrea del Verrocchio, Rosso Fiorentino's altarpiece depicting the Marriage of the Virgin and a fresco by Bronzino showing the Martyrdom of Saint Lorenzo are also in the church's collection.
The picturesque Chiostro dei Canonici, also designed by Brunelleschi, is part of the complex, with an elegant double loggia.
The New Sacristy and the Chapel of the Princes, preserves some of Michelangelo's masterpieces: together they form the Medici Chapels, a state museum which is in the back of the church, in Piazza Madonna degli Aldobrandini.