The Ponte Vecchio is almost poetry. For its beauty, for its views and above all for its history, its stories. A symbol of Florence, along with Brunelleschi’s dome, its origin dates back to one of the lethal floods of the Arno, the one recorded in the curious year of 1333. On that occasion, the flood carried away with fury the bridge that crossed the city. the narrowest area of ​​the river. But not only. It is remembered as the worst flood that the capital of Tuscany has ever suffered, with 300 deaths and countless damages. Such was the destruction that the cleaning work alone lasted half a year. The water reached Dantesque levels, reaching three meters high in the Palazzo Vecchio. Although the worst was yet to come.

Irony of fate, that same day, November 4, but in 1966, Florence would experience its last and catastrophic alluvione, even more intense but not as deadly. The new bridge, that is, the Ponte Vecchio, which the authorities inaugurated in 1345, withstood the flood 633 years later. What’s more: it has always resisted everything, even the withdrawal of Nazi troops, becoming the only one who did not blow up on August 4, 1945.

After so many vicissitudes, the restoration announced just ten days ago, the first in its intense history, is more than deserved. The maintenance intervention will begin in October, will last three years and will cost two million euros, although the City Council will only pay one. The other will be run by an old Florentine family, the Antinori, which was already one of the most important in the city when the famous bridge was built. First, as silk merchants and from 1385 as winemakers. Since then, 26 generations have been dedicated to wine production. And, in fact, this million-dollar contribution to the city aims to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the marketing of Tignanello, the winery’s flagship.

The Habsburg-Lorraine made them marquises and here they remain, in the Renaissance Palazzo Antinori, in the square that bears their name, with a wine buchette on the façade, those windows in the shape of a Chianti fiasco that appear in many of the palaces of the ancient Florentine nobility. Let us therefore toast with this broth to the health of a Ponte Vecchio that, renewed, will continue to be a privileged witness to the history of Florence.