Fighting counterfeit goods in late 16th century
Fake goods and counterfeit products can be a source of wealth or a commercial problem (it depends on which side you are, the producer of fake products or the producer of the copied products), and in the Renaissance it was the same! This is why the goldsmiths from Florence asked the Granduke to ban the use of a metal used as fake gold: the "orpello". They said that the use of such material could create frauds and "ruin the city's reputation". Granduke Ferdinand I agreed with them and in 1597 issued a law to ban the use and production of orpello from the city. Only five monasteries in Florence were allowed to use that metal, under the careful control of the Chief of Goldsmiths' Corporation. Another example of how modern the past was...
Here you can find the photos of the full law!
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