The Niccolini family is a noble family originally from Florence. It is said that the name Sirigatti attributed to the first of the Niccolini family depended on the alarm with the cat brought with honor in the battle of Benevento in 1266 by Arrigo di Lucchese, the "cat's sire" who lived only in the first half of the thirteenth century. However things went, established in Florence from the original lands of Passignano, the family took its name from the nephew of Arrigo, Niccolino di Ruzza, who died during the siege of Emperor Arrigo VII in Florence, in 1312.
As with many Florentine families, the Niccolini consolidated their economic power with the processing and trade of fabrics, then with exchange activities. Its members also held numerous posts in the governments of the Republican Florence, then of the ducal and grand-ducal Florence. The son of Niccolino, Lapo (1271-1342) enrolled in the Silk Art and was the first of the family to be awarded the post of prior and gonfaloniere of justice for the City of Florence. Also the grandson of Lapo, Giovanni (1356-1429), achieved the major positions in the government of the Republic and wrote a memoir on the family of his ancestors. His numerous sons followed the Niccolini in different branches. The descendants of Biagio were those who during the nineteenth century acquired the surname, arms, assets and archive of the Alamanni. The well-known poet and theater writer Giovanbattista (1782-1861), son of Ippolito and Settimia Da Filicaia, belonged to their branch.
Lorenzo di Lapo's line became extinct in 1782, with the death of Luigi di Girolamo. Of the three daughters of the latter, Agatha had died in Lisbon, during the earthquake, Anna Maria had married the Marquis Pompeo Lagarelli of Fano and Elisabetta was linked with Ippolito Niccolini. The descendants of the penultimate son of Lapo, Bernardo, took the parts of the Florentine Republic, but was the last of Lapo's sons, Otto, to give life to the line from which the most illustrious representatives of the family derived.
Otto di Lapo (1410-1470) dedicated himself to the legal profession and was active ambassador of the Florentine Republic to the governments of Siena, Ferrara and Rome by Niccolò V who granted Otto the title of count palatine, a title later confirmed by Paul II. He was an ally of Cosimo il Vecchio dei Medici and contributed to the rise of his home to the government of Florence. From 1467, he was ambassador residing in Rome then in Naples where he died. He married twice and had 15 children and the firstborn Agnolo gave birth to the still active branch of Niccolini.
Agnolo (1445-1499) continued his father's footsteps and was ambassador of obedience to Innocent VIII. In 1489 he was elected gonfalonier of justice for the Republic of Florence and subsequently went on a mission to Naples and Milan. One of the sons of Agnolo, Matteo (1473-1540), was a well-known lawyer, ambassador and vicar of the Upper Valdarno in 1511, then he went through the difficult moments of the Republic of Florence and the return of the Medici. He lavished for the first ascent of Cosimo I dei Medici, canceling the efforts that the cardinals Salviati, Ridolfi and Gaddi were doing in favor of the Florentine escapees, protected by Paul III, becoming finally intimate of Cosimo.
Matteo's son, Agnolo (1502-1567), was also welcomed by Cosimo I and employed by him in difficult international embassies and as an advisor for matters relating to the Republic of Siena. It was Agnolo who suggested the duke to attack the French and Siena, where he was sent immediately after the conquest and elected governor in 1557. On 14 July 1564, once he was widowed by Alessandra Ugolini, he became archbishop of Pisa, in 1967 cardinal of S. Callisto.
Giovanni di Agnolo (1544-1611) accompanied Cosimo I dei Medici to Rome to receive the grand-ducal crown, he was then ambassador to Francesco I in Mantua and resident in Rome from 1588 to 1610. His work was instrumental in reconciling Henry IV to the Catholic Church . It was he who acquired the Casentino estate and the Ciani da Montauto palace in Via dei Servi in Florence from his family of origin; also began the construction of the Niccolini Chapel in the church of Santa Croce. His wife Caterina Salviati had more children including Francesco and Filippo.
Francesco di Giovanni (1584-1650), destined for an ecclesiastical career, followed his father to Rome until he was alive, then he returned to Florence and married Caterina Riccardi. In 1621 he was elected Minister resident in Rome where he faced very difficult diplomatic nodes such as the succession of the Duke of Urbino and the trial of Galileo Galilei. In 1643 it was invested with the Marquisate of Campiglia.
His brother Filippo (1586-1666), ambassador, aio of prince Giovan Carlo dei Medici from 1622, was then chamber master. From 1625 he was granted the marquisate of Montegiovi, changed in '37 with the equivalent title of Ponsacco and Camugliano, where he acquired and enlarged the Villa di Camugliano. He also built the family chapel in the church of the Convent of La Verna and finished the one begun by his father in the church of Santa Croce. At the time of designating an heir for his branch that had none of direct, he called Lorenzo di Matteo Niccolini, of the line of Piero di Matteo, brother of Cardinal Agnolo and progenitor of the line still living.
Piero di Matteo (1507-1570) had been commissioner of Prato in 1548 and of Pistoia in 1567, while his son Lorenzo (1541-1607) had studied law and practiced law. His eldest son Piero (1573-1651) was vicar general of the archbishop Marzi Medici of whom he had inherited the position in 1632. Piero's brother, Simone (1577-1662) was a famous lawyer, but he was the youngest Matteo ( 1594-1663) to continue the line.
Matteo's son, Francesco, carried out a brilliant ecclesiastical career in the Roman curia and with the governments of Ascoli Piceno and Camerino, he was then nuncio of Portugal and Paris, where he died in 1692. His brother Piero benefited from the legacy of Francesco di Luigi Calderini assuming its name and died in 1716. Finally, Lorenzo (1632-1715), heir to his cousin Filippo in 1666, was the Marquis of Ponsacco and Camugliano and married Contessa, daughter of Paolo Del Bufalo and the last Bandini of the Marquises of Antrodoco , I will take some of the goods.
Filippo di Lorenzo (1655-1738) was the third Marquis of Ponsacco and Camugliano, cupbearer of the great prince Ferdinando, in 1686 he was elected first chamber gentleman and had as a gift the Commenda founded in the Order of St. Stefano dei Valgarini of Fermo.
Of the sons of Philip, Giovanluca (1689-1742), IV Marquis of Ponsacco and Camugliano, embraced the ecclesiastical state, as Antonio (1701-1769) who did not adhere to any order but was a man of vast culture and multiple interests, in relation with the major Italian and European thinkers and philosophers. Giuseppe (1698-1735) married Virginia of Bartolomeo Corsini from whom he had Filippo (+ 1759) who left the title of the marquisate for a short time to his brother Bartolomeo (+1760), abbot of San Zeno in Pisa. The other brother Lorenzo (1735-1795), VII marquis, participated in the financing of the reconstruction of the church of the Carmine of Florence, destroyed by a fire. From the wife Giulia of Vincenzo Riccardi had Pietro Leopoldo and Giuseppe (1761-1811), VIII marquis, who soon saw the economic ruin of his house. The Niccolini were forced to sell their very rich art collections and to get rid of the building in via dei Servi, their headquarters in Florence.
It was the son of Giuseppe, Lorenzo (1797-1868), IX Marquis, who re-established the economy of the house and bought the new Florentine headquarters, the Palazzo dei Bourbon del Monte in Via dei Fossi. From his wife Caterina Price he had Carlo, X marchese, and Maddalena, then wife of Ferdinando Guicciardini.