Medici Family Cold Case Finally Solved
Malaria, not murder, was responsible for the deaths of two members of the clan that dominated the Florentine Renaissance.
By Rossella Lorenzi
Wed Jul 14, 2010 12:35 PM ET
Scientists who exhumed the remains of several members of the Medicis, the clan that dominated the Florentine Renaissance, have conclusively dismissed the theory of family murders, solving a more than 400-year-old cold case.
Malaria, not poison as long rumored, killed Francesco I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, and his second wife, Bianca Cappello, according to research to be published in Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.
The couple died a few hours apart in October 1587 after 11 days of agony. Their almost simultaneous deaths led to speculation that they had been murdered.
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