It houses the Museum of the Old Florentine House.HistoryPalazzo Davanzati was erected in the second half of the 14th century by the Davizzi family, who were wealthy members of the wool guild. In 1516 it was sold to the Bartolini and, later that century, to the Davanzati family, also rich merchants (1578), who held it until 1838. After escaping the numerous demolitions of 19th century Florence, it
was bought by Elia Volpi, an antiquarian, who restored It in (his impression of) the original style.In 1910, Volpi opened the building as a private museum (Museo Privato della Casa Fiorentina Antica). The contents of this museum kept changing as Volpi sold the furniture at auctions, including a major one in 1916 in New York. In the 1920s, Egyptian antique dealers Vitale and Leopoldo Bengujat acquired the building and its contents. In 1951 it was purchased by the Italian state and kept open as a museum. By 1995 the museum needed to be closed for major restoration to keep the building from falling down. The museum was partially reopened in 2005 with the ground and first floors; by 2012 all the floors were open to visitors.ArchitectureThe palace consists of a facade that unifies a grouping of earlier, medieval tower homes that the owner purchased with the intent to put them together.It is constructed in sandstone, with three large portals on the horizontal axis, and three stories of mullioned windows. The topmost floor has a loggia supported by four columns and two pilasters that was added in the 16th century. The façade displays the Davanzati coats of arms and has traces of other decorations.