The Merchant of Prato

A man “who kept women and lived only on partridges, adoring art and money and forgetting his creator and himself”. Over his long life the workaholic Merchant of Prato, Francesco Datini, must have set a price on every commodity imaginable, including the 20-year-old slave who bore him the only child he recognized: Ginevra. At his death in 1410, he left 124,549 business letters, 573 account books, and a fortune of over 100,000 florins. The scarlet gown cost around 80 florins, rather more than the slave girl.
Tim Parks

Un uomo «che tenea la femmina, e viveano solo a starne, adorando lo’ arte, lo’ invio e ’l danaro, dimenticando Iddio e se stesso», Francesco Datini, l’infaticabile mercante di Prato, nella sua lunga vita fissò un prezzo per ogni bene immaginabile, compresa la schiava ventenne che gli diede l’unica figlia che riconobbe: Ginevra. Morì nel 1410 lasciando 124.549 lettere d’affari, 573 libri contabili e una fortuna di oltre 100.000 fiorini. La veste scarlatta sarà costata circa 80 fiorini, ben più della schiava.

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