Frederick was born in Florence (1838-1906) but was sent to England as a young boy to study. His father Thomas, was a colonel of the Coldstream Guards and his grandfather Giles, had been Governor of Bengal, India. Giles accumulated an incredible fortune which passed on to Frederick when he was 21 years old.
He started to collect immediately upon his coming of age and ended up transforming his house into a museum “which has cost me a great deal of money and much care and effort”, as he wrote on his will. His first piece was bought around 1870. When Frederick died he left the museum to the municipality of Florence, to improve the knowledge of history for the benefit of future generations.
Today the museum is a Foundation according to Stibbert’s last will.
The Japanese Armoury
The three rooms which today house the Japanese collection, were built for European medieval items but in the late 1870’s, Frederick started taking an interest in Far Eastern arms and armours. When Japan opened its ports to foreigners, many items started their journey to the West. Frederick Stibbert was a frequent visitor to the Universal Expositions in which Japan exhibited its best productions. The Stibbert Japanese collection was one of the earliest to be formed.
The collection includes 95 suits of armours, 200 helmets, 285 swords and spears, 880 sword guards and many metal fittings. Almost all items date from the Momoyama and Edo periods (1570-1868) with few examples of earlier productions.
Mon-Tue-Wed 10AM-2PM (Ticket Office closes at 1PM)
Fri-Sat-Sun 10AM-6PM (Ticket Office closes at 5PM)
Closed on Thursday.
The Museum is closed: January 1st, Easter Sunday, May 1st, August 15th, December 25th.
Full Ticket: 8,00 EUR
Children 4-12 years old: 6,00 EUR
Children 0-3 years old: FREE
via Federigo Stibbert 26
via di Montughi 4
[bus n. 4 from train station Firenze SMN, bus stop Gioia (A on the map)]