Michelangelo's Hiding Place

Today I have something extra special to share. I'm going to take you inside a very secret hiding place. It was Michelangelo’s. And it dates to 1530. It is also the setting of our coming story app tour: In the Footsteps of Giants.

This hiding place was only discovered 40 years ago, after a veil of secrecy that lasted hundreds of years was finally, accidentally lifted.

It was found because the walls of the room are covered with original sketches... by the hand of the Maestro Michelangelo himself. But why, you might ask, was Michelangelo in hiding? 

Few people know this, but Michelangelo, who lived to the ripe old age of 88, faced execution when he was 55 years old. He'd fallen on the wrong side of the mighty Medici, who wanted his head, and so he went into hiding. No one knows for how long—guesstimates range from three weeks to three months. And no one knew where…

...for 446 years.

Then, in 1976, his hiding place was discovered thanks to drawings made in charcoal preserved by the plaster Michelangelo had used to cover them up.

In the Medici Chapel New Sacristy with Director, Monica Bietti (center) and Paola Angelini of Guided Florence Tours (left).

In the Medici Chapel New Sacristy with Director, Monica Bietti (center) and Paola Angelini of Guided Florence Tours (left).

Due to their age and fragile state, the drawings are not accessible to the general public. You have to be a Michelangelo scholar to get to see them. 

Thanks to the efforts of our Florence-based partner, Paola Angelini of Guided Florence Tours -- which I recommend to you without reservation! -- author Mary Hoffman and I were allowed to visit the room while on our latest research mission to Florence earlier this month.

I was given permission to record our visit as well. Now I have the honor of sharing our experience with you. I still get goose bumps just thinking about it!

to enjoy this trip through time with Mary, Monica, Paola, me, and Michelangelo.

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