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Giuseppe Catani's home
Once the home in Prato of the well-known merchant, it is a typical example (one of the first) of a pre-Renaissance bourgeoisie residence.
Actually, it constituted only a portion of the Datini home, which extended to the block opposite the present-day entrance (where there was a house with a garden and warehouse) and included a part of an adjacent block where, in the merchant's final years, the stables were situated and where the Ceppi coat-of-arms can still be seen on a portal.

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image representing one coat of arms on the stone
The first nucleus of the building - situated in Porta Fuia, on the corner between Via Rinaldesca and Via del Porcellatico - probably consisted of that "isolated cottage i' sullo chanto dello Porcellaticho" which was purchased for him in 1354 by Francesco's guardian, Piero di Giunta del Rosso, and was immediately restructured.
The cost of that edifice and the work on it then amounted to just 63 lire and 6 soldi. So it was a very modest building, even though it was collocated in a prestigious area, bordering with the Rinaldeschi and Alberti families' palazzi.

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the plan of restoration of the Datini Palace
The present-day structure is the result of a series of successive acquisitions of contiguous buildings, initially conceived as craftsmen's workshops and dwellings and which contributed to the widening of the original nucleus of lodgings where Datini settled on his return from Avignon.

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The inner courtyard with loggia of the Datini Palace
The first main chunk of restructuring, as related by Datini himself, took place in 1383 and concerned the wing overlooking Via Rinaldesca. But the most significant alterations were made between 1387 and 1390 when the building, at first consisting of one storey, had a floor added and the courtyard was built with its loggia and well.

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The house with garden and tabernacolo on the angle
In the building opposite the entrance, a warehouse and a house with painted loggia were then fabricated, along with a garden with a tabernacle on the corner, "pieno di melaranzi e rose e viole e altri begli fiori", about which Datini said: "Costa p(i)ùe di fiorini 600: ch'è istata una grande folìa: sarebe meglio ad avergli messi in uno podere".

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S. Cristoforo
It was during this major restructuring work (certainly the most extensive) that most of the fresco work was carried out by Niccolò di Piero Gerini: a St. Christopher, still well-conserved (only completed in 1394).

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© Fondazione Istituto Internazionale di Storia Economica "F. Datini"