Built on the site of an Etruscan settlement, Florence rose to economic and cultural pre-eminence under the Medici in the 15th and 16th centuries. Florence was built on the site of an Etruscan settlement and the later ancient Roman colony of Florentia (founded in 59 BC). This Tuscan city became a symbol of the Renaissance during the early Medici period (between the 15th and 16th centuries), reaching extraordinary economic and cultural development levels. Florence is materially associated with events of universal importance. It was in the milieu of the Neo-Platonic Academia that the concept of the Renaissance was forged. Florence is the birthplace of modern.