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1475 On March 6, Michelangelo Buonarrotti born at the small town of Caprese in the mountains northeast of Florence where his father was on temporary assignment serving the Florentine government.
1480 Michelangelo and his family living in Florence on Via dell’Anguillara. Family lives in building that is still there at the corner with Via Bentaccordi.
1481 Michelangelo’s mother Francesca dies.Soon will have step-mother.
1484 Michelangelo’s father enters him into one of the grammar schools within the Santa Croce quarter to study Latin and other subjects.
1485 Michelangelo’s father remarries a woman from a prosperous family named Lucrezia delgi Ubaldini.
1486 A friend, artist Francesco Granacci, encourages Michelangelo in his art and takes his work to show to Ghirlandaio who was then one of the most successful painters in Florence and who ran a large workshop.
1487 Michelangelo’s father formally enscribes him in the bottega (art studio) of Ghirlandaio and M. works with Ghirlandaio at Santa Maria Novella on the frescoes of the Tornabuoni Chapel around the main altar.
1490 Michelangelo taken to Medici sculpture garden, near the monastery of San Marco and meets Lorenzo de’ Medici who adores him and invites him into the Medici Palace with the consent of M’s father.
1491 Michelangelo studies painting with Ghirlandaio and sculpture in the Medici garden under the guidance of Bertoldo di Giovanni a student of the great Florentine sculptor, Donatello.
1492 In April Michelangelo’s patron and friend Lorenzo de’ Medici dies and plunges both the Medici family and all of Florence into mourning.
1494 In September the King of France invades Italy. Brings the largest army Italy has seen since Roman days. Moves south toward Florence causing chaos and confusion in the city.
1494 In October Michelangelo flees the crumbling order of Medicean Florence. Travels north to Bologna where he sculpts two small statues for the tomb of St. Dominic in the cathedral which are still in place.
1496 Michelangelo goes to Rome for first time. Produces the famous Cupid sold as a genuine antique and the Bacchus now in the Bargello in Florence.
1497 Michelangelo receives the commission. Begins work on the Pietá for St. Peter’s.
1500 St Peter’s Pietá is complete. Installed in chapel in time for Holy Year Jubilee.
1501 In August Michelangelo receives the commission from Opera del Duomo for the statue that becomes David which was originally planned to stand in a niche on the cathedral facade along with sculpture by Donatello and others.
1501 In September Michelangelo begins work on the David. Works in a specially built shed right near the cathedral.
1502 By February Michelangelo has made so much progress on the David that the Opera del Duomo pays him 400 florins.
1503 Election of new pope: Julius II (Giuliano della Rovere).
1503 In Florence a commission of artists is formed to decide where Michelangelo’s giant marble sculpture should stand with the final decision going to the Piazza della Signoria in front of the palace of government.
1504 Michelangelo is working on the Pitti Tondo. Now in the Bargello in Florence.
1504 In May, the David is ready and so the wall of the Opera del Duomo workshop is broken down and the slow journey through the streets of Florence begins to move the Giant to its place in the Piazza della Signoria, a journey which takes forty men four days to accomplish.
1505 Pope Julius asks Michelangelo to come to Rome to sculpt his tomb. M. signs the contract and goes to Cararra to obtain the marble.
1506 In Rome, Michelangelo is unable to get an audience with the Pope over the tomb project so he leaves Rome making the Pope furious; M. refuses to return; the gov. of Florence begs him to make peace with Pope; finally M. goes to Bologna and meets Pope Julius and makes peace.
1508 Michelangelo and the Pope return to Rome; Julius insists that M. take on the project to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel; M. says no I am not a painter.
1512 In October, the Sistine ceiling is complete and is recognized immediately as a masterpiece and thousands line up to see it.
1513 In March, Pope Julius II dies; election for his successor chooses Giovanni de’ Medici, now Pope Leo X, Michelangelo’s childhood friend from the Palazzo Medici in the early 1490’s when M. was living with the Medici family.
1513 Michelangelo continues to work on the Julius tomb; produces Moses.
1516 Pope Leo X asks Michelangelo to take on the completion of the Medici sponsored church in Florence of San Lorenzo.
1520 Medici change their minds and ask Micheangelo to begin work on the New Sacristy at San Lorenzo which will be a Medici family tomb.
1521 Pope Leo X dies. General sense that the great Roman Renaissance is over: Raphael is dead, Leonardo is dead, Pope Leo dead.
1523 The College of Cardinals elects a new pope: Giulio de’ Medici, as Pope Clement VII who is another friend of Michelangelo’s from the days when he was living in the Medici Palace
1527 The terrible Sack of Rome by foreign troops, many from Germany; Michelangelo is in Florence; the Sack temporarily destroys the Pope’s power and the Medici are thrown out of Florence. M. stays and joins the republican resistance that lasts three years. M. is put in charge of fortifications a very important post. He is in great danger since he is seen as Medici friend and has enemies in and out of the Medici circle.
1530 The Siege of Florence breaks the city and with help of the troops of the Emperor, and representatives of the Medici family and the Pope retake control of Florence and as a result Micheangelo is in danger of execution, hides for days, others intervene finally Pope pardons him.
1534 Pope Clement VII dies: Cardinals elect new pope Alessandro Farnese, Pope Paul III, old friend of Michelangelo.
1535 Pope Paul asks Micheangelo to paint the Last Judgment in the Sistine Chapel.
1537 Michelangelo’s great friendship with the brilliant Vittoria Colonna.Roman literary figure.
1541 The Last Judgement is unveiled in the Sistine Chapel. Causes great controversy; too violent; too nude; filled with recognizable portraits.
1545 Michelangelo begins working on the frescoes of the Conversion of Paul and the Crucifixion of Peter in the Pauline Chapel in the Vatican.
1546 The death of Antonio da Sangallo the architect of St Peter’s creates crisis and Pope Paul comes to 71 year old Michelangelo and asks him to take over, a commission Michelangelo accepts with the provision that he will have total control; he gets it-power over greatest architectural project in all of Europe.
1547 In February: Vittoria Colonna dies and Michelangelo is devastated.
1550 Vasari publishes the first edition: Lives of the Eminent Artists.
1553 Michelangelo is working on the Pietá now in the Museum of the Cathedral, Florence, probably planned to be on his own tomb, a work that conveys sadness of this period of his life, the loss of Vittoria, other friends and brother.
1555 A new Pope reappoints Micheangelo as the chief architect for Saint Peter’s and M. now begins the design and construction of the dome with Brunelleschi in mind.
1559 Micheangelo is working on: the Rondanini Pietá now in Milan.
1563 In January, the Accademia del Disegno is established in Florence. This is the first artistic academy in history. Michelangelo elected honorary head along with the Duke of Tuscany. Michelangelo now reigns as the most celebrated most famous artist in the whole world.
1564 On the 18th of February, after a very brief illness Michelangelo dies in his house in Rome surrounded by close friends; his nephew Leonardo and Florentine friends sneak his body out of Rome knowing that the papacy will try to bury him in Rome; his body is brought to Florence to the convent of San Pier Maggiore just up the street from his apartment where he lived as child and he is buried in Santa Croce within sight of his childhood home on Via dell’Anguillara.