Mercato Nuovo, FlorenceDecember 7, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C
After meeting up with Peta and Errol for another coffee (Italian coffee is the best), we started exploring the streets of Florence. Even though we have been here before there is still so much to see, so much history to absorb. As we were making our way towards the Piazza della Signoria, we can across the Mercato Nouvo and we knew we had to stop and shop for some Italian leather items – it was a must.
The Mercato Nuovo or Straw Market is located in the historic centre of Florence and is a covered market that has been open for business as far back as the 11th century. It gets its name from one of the traditional products sold in the market, straw and from the fact it is the “new” market place that replaced the old market in Piazza Vecchio. The Market stalls are protected by the loggia del Porcellino with high arched openings, which was constructed in 1551.
The most famous attraction in the market is the Fontana del Porcellino which features a bronze statue of a wild boar. This piece is a replica of the original which stands in the Uffizi Gallery and was created by Pietro Tacca. Visitors to Il Porcellino put a coin into the boar’s mouth with the intent to let it fall through the underlying grating for good luck or to have a wish come true, and rub the boar’s snout to ensure a return to Florence or for good luck. There are a variety of “traditions” associated with this statue dating back to as early as 1766 when a Scottish literary traveler made note of it. These traditions have kept the snout of the boar in a state of polished sheen while the rest of the boar’s body has patinated to a dull brownish green. It has also been replaced a couple of times due to the wear on the snout.Read more