David is a masterpiece of Renaissance sculpture created by Michelangelo from 1501-1504. David is a marble statue of a standing nude male who represents the Biblical hero David. It was originally commissioned to be part of series of Biblical prophets to be displayed on the roof of the Florence Cathedral, but it ended up in the public square outside the Palazzo Vecchio, which is the civic center in Florence, Italy. The statue of David was unveiled in the Piazza della Signoria on September 8, 1504.  

Because the statue of David represented a hero, it began to symbolize the defense of civil liberties in the Republic of Florence, which was an independent city-state threatened by more powerful rival states. The direction of David’s eyes were focused toward Rome for this reason.

The statue was removed from the piazza in 1873 to protect it from damage, and it was placed in the Accademia Gallery in Florence where it attracted many visitors. David is still in this location and he still attracts visitors from all over the world. A replica was positioned in the Piazza della Signoria in 1910.

An ownership dispute occurred in 2010 when the municipality of Florence claimed ownership based on a legal review of historical documents in opposition to the Italian Culture Ministry, which disputed the municipality’s claim.

The statue of David has been reproduced many times using different mediums from plaster to fiberglass to bronze, and the replicas are displayed in many settings around the world.  

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