O'Reilly logo

The Big Four by Stuart Kells, Ian D. Gow

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

2

GLORY, NOT INFAMY

The Medici Bank as a precursor to the Big Four

The merchant state

Piero de Medici – known as ‘Piero the Gouty’ (‘Piero il Gottoso’) – was born in 1416. In 1464 his father died and Piero inherited, at the age of forty-eight, a famous institution that was exceptionally profitable and well-run. Piero’s father – the illustrious Cosimo de Medici – and his grandfather – Giovanni de Medici – had built the family business into Europe’s most important private enterprise: the greatest bank in the world.

The Medici Bank was based in Florence, the capital of Tuscany. In the late middle ages, Florence was a substantial and prosperous city and the centre of global finance. A large gold coin, the florin, was first issued and named there; ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required