During the Renaissance, Florence profited from a mercantile economy due to the guilds, the quality and variety of goods and the style and management of the market place.
Through historical and economic data this research paper will express how Florence flourished from a mercantile economy in the Renaissance.
The Renaissance was the rebirth of Europe and it all started in the city of Florence. Florence and everything that made a standard Renaissance city: painters, sculptors, writers, architects, and a vivid culture. Soon all of Europe would follow in Florence’s footsteps and “the setting is so rich, varied, rambunctious, and inventive as Italy in the Renaissance” (Cohen 1). The painters and sculptors defined Renaissance culture and could actually make a living because they were being sponsored.
The Renaissance was the age of the merchants and because of the merchants the economies and culture rose. The Renaissance is remembered by many people for the works of Michelangelo, Da Vinci, and Raphael. What many people do not know about the Renaissance is that the textile industry was more famous and profitable than the painter industry. Florence was the place to get any of your goods because of its location. Merchants went to Florence to sell their unique goods, buy, sell, or make cloth, and attend the guilds.
Florence was the trend-setter of the Renaissance, whatever they did everyone else wanted to do because Florence was very successful. “No great city has ever been built far from the water… [Florence] was now more vulnerable, but it had easy access to an important trade route. It had good communications by river to the west, and practicable passes through the mountains in other directions” (Hale 76). Most successful cities of any time period were established near the water for example Egypt. Florence’s location helped them become successful through word of mouth. They were in the center of everything that had to do with trade and when the merchants return to their ships or went to a different city, they would talk about Florence and this helped its reputation.
TREND-SETTERS OF THE MARKET
“Almost every trade had a guild – a kind of trade union to protect the interests of tradesmen and their families, control wages, and prices, set standards for training and for the quality of their goods” (Mason 13). The guilds regulated the price and quality of goods so it was fair for everyone. The guildsmen would have a meeting to decide what each item should cost and whatever they decided what the price and quality should be and all the guilds who sold that product would have to follow their decision. Their decisions would be the standards for all the goods those guilds sold and this made it possible for all the people to get the best of everything and not have to worry about being cheated. Everyone respected the guilds and when their government was corrupted or their leader was not doing at least...