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Prato is a city and comune in the north of Tuscany and it is the capital of the Province of Prato. It has more than 180,000 inhabitants and it is Tuscany's second largest city after Florence.

Historically, Prato's economy has been based on the textile industry. Nowadays it is also a centre of the slow food movement, with many local specialities, including cantucci, a type of biscotti, sold by local speciality bakers.

A visit to Prato is certainly worth for tourists, who can visit the Castello dell'Imperatore, the Duomo in which is kept the deeply venerated relic of the Virgin Mary's Holy Girdle and where the splendid frescoes of Filippo Lippi, recently restored, can be admired.

In some historical buildings and in the city's museums, Museo di Pittura Murale and Museo dell'Opera del Duomo paintings by such great masters as Agnolo Gaddi, Paolo Uccello, Filippo and Filippino Lippi, Donatello, Michelozzo and other great 14th century and Renaissance artists can be found.

Not to be missed is of course the Museo del Tessuto (Textile Museum), a memorial to the city's textile history, where samples and documents dating from the 5th century to our own day are displayed. Worth visiting the recently inaugurated Museo di Scienze Planetarie and and the Centre of Contemporary Art "Luigi Pecci" as well.

Notable people were born in Prato, such as Filippino Lippi, painter, Lorenzo Bartolini, sculptor, Jury Chechi, olympic gold medalist, Domenico Zipoli, composer, Christian Vieri, soccer player and so on...



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