In the early-sixteenth century, Giuliano da Sangallo designed an unusual suburban villa for his Medici patrons on a site near Via Laura in Florence. Typical of Giuliano's approach to architectural design, the building engages in a dialogue with the architecture of the past. Several elements derive from ancient monuments-in particular the imperial baths of Diocletian and Caracalla. Yet other aspects of the plan-some that are unique within his architectural oeuvre-reflect another source. The division of the palace into two identical, grand apartments and the presence of a prominent three-sided courtyard reveal the impact of Vitruvius's description of the Greek house.

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