Skip to main content

Spinelli Archive

Call Number: GEN MSS 109

Scope and Contents

Spinelli Archives. Over 100,000 documents dating from the fourteenth century to the eighteenth, from the palace archive of a Florentine family distinguished for their international banking and mercantile interests in the fifteenth century, their political activities in the city for several centuries, their patronage of religious institutions in Florence and Rome, and their association with the local silk guild. Included are the records of family members who served as papal bankers in the fifteenth century, ambassadors to the courts of Henry VIII and Charles V, churchmen, senators, and ducal employees. The collection documents social and family history, recording the day-to-day concerns of merchants, farmers, workmen, slaves, women, and children in thousands of wills, marriage contracts, personal diaries, family correspondence, grocery lists, household inventories, farm reports, tax statements, and business ledgers. In addition to the papers of the Spinelli family members, the Spinelli Archive also includes extensive documentation on the Baldocci, Guardi, Buonguglielmi and many other Florentine families.

For the purposes of cataloging and description, the Spinelli Archives has been divided into the following groups:

The Spinelli Family Papers I

The Spinelli Family Papers II & III

The Baldocci Family Papers

The Guardi Family Papers

The Buonguglielmi Family Papers I

The Buonguglielmi Family Papers II

Miscellaneous Material

Parchments Oversize


Miscellaneous Material contains small groups of papers from related families, empty wrappers (the contents of which are assumed not to be present in the archive), and various other papers.

Parchments includes selected parchments from various parts of the archive, housed separately for preservation and descriptive purposes.

Addendum includes a small number of items acquired after the bulk of the archive had been received by the library and processing had commenced.

Oversize contains oversize materials from the archive, including numerous original wrappers, the contents of which are housed in the family groups.


  • 14th - 19th century

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

A limited number of items from the archive as a whole have been withheld and await conservation treatment and may not be available for use. These are referenced in the archive finding aids. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.

Conditions Governing Use

The Spinelli Family Archive: Spinelli Family Papers I are the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchase, 1988.


300 Linear Feet ((697 boxes) + 1 broadside)

Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL


The papers document the lives and careers of members of a prominent Florentine family, the Spinelli, and several related families.
Guide to the The Spinelli Archive
Under Revision
by Diane J. Ducharme
April 1992
Description rules
Beinecke Manuscript Unit Archival Processing Manual
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

P. O. Box 208330
New Haven CT 06520-8330 US
(203) 432-2977


121 Wall Street
New Haven, CT 06511

Opening Hours

Access Information

The Beinecke Library is open to all Yale University students and faculty, and visiting researchers whose work requires use of its special collections. You will need to bring appropriate photo ID the first time you register. Beinecke is a non-circulating, closed stack library. Paging is done by library staff during business hours. You can request collection material online at least two business days in advance of your visit, using the request links in Archives at Yale. For more information, please see Planning Your Research Visit and consult the Reading Room Policies prior to visiting the library.