In the Gene Brucker edited Two Memoirs of Renaissance Florence: The Diaries of Buonaccorso Pitti & Gregorio Dati we are treated to the autobiographies of two Renaissance Florence merchants. In these autobiographies we discover much more than the lives of the two subjects, for we also uncover a great deal of information relevant to Florence, Italy, during the 14th and 15th centuries, including the merchantís attitudes toward gain, the Protestant ethic, the handling of money, social responsibilities of merchants, social movement and other facets of Medieval life.
From 1380 to 1430, Pitti and Dati were witness to one of the most creative half-centuries in all of human existence. The two diarists were businessmen, but each from distinctly different backgrounds. Pitti was a member of one of Florenceís most aristocratic families, on a level with the wealthy and powerful Medicis. Datiís origins, on the other hand, were much more modest than Pittiís, but despite these humble origins he achieved wealth and considerable political influence in his lifetime.
Pittiís diary gives us insight into the socio-politics and economics of this era in Florence, along with Venice, the two Republics to survive in Italy. Pitti was a diverse and complex man, one who gambled, bought and sold jewels, and traded everything from saffron to wine. His accounts of his gambling do more than show us he was often unsuccessful at the sport, they als