The city of Florence, or Firenze, is situated on the River Arno and at the foot of the Apennines in central Italy. It is now the capital of Tuscany. Established as Florentia in the first century BC, Florence developed into a thriving centre which was, by the late eleventh century, increasingly independent of the Holy Roman Empire. This period saw the first flowering of the Florentine arts in the Tuscan Romanesque. This is also known as the proto-Renaissance and is exemplified in buildings such as the Church of San Miniato al Monte. In the fifteenth century Florence was home to the birth of the Renaissance. This is seen in architecture in the work of Brunelleschi, in sculpture in the works of Donatello and Ghiberti and in painting in that of Masaccio. Florence is associated with many other great figures of Western culture, including Petrach, Boccaccio, Dante, Alberti, Giotto, and the Della Robbias (see Lucca della Robbia). The history of the Medici family was also intertwined with that of the city for a period of three hundred years. The many historic and artistic sites of the city include the Duomo, the Pitti Palace, the Uffizi Gallery and the Accademia. See also Ruskin and Florence.