|Piazza del Duomo during the flood of 1966(photo: Bazzecchi/khi)|
50 years ago on this day, Italy was struck by floods that devastated both Florence and Venice. It was the greatest loss of art and architecture from a natural disaster in 20th-century Europe.
It was the worst flood in Florence since 1557. The River Arno rose more than 10m above its normal level, engulfing the Ponte Vecchio and swept through jewellers’ shops on the 14th-century bridge. The historic city center also suffered damage, particularly to the Ghiberti doors of the baptistery.
The 1966 flood in Florence killed 101 people and damaged or destroyed millions of masterpieces of art and rare books.
Below is a video collection of images from the flood to offer a visual of the profound impact the flood had on Florence. It certainly wasn’t a warm welcome for our Maestro, who arrived in Florence only four months after flooding began.