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Duke Cosimo de’ Medici loved beautiful and exotic things, particularly flowers and plants from far-off lands. So when an explorer delivers the magnificent jasmine plant all the way from India as a present to the duke, Cosimo guards it jealously, forbidding anyone to remove even one leaf for themselves. When the foolish gardener Antonio, determined to prove his love for Donatella, clips a sprig of the forbidden jasmine, he is sent to Volterra prison. Now brave Donatella is his only hope for freedom. The story of Brave Donatella and the Jasmine Thief is based on a legend about Duke Cosimo de’ Medici and the origins of the Italian bridal tradition of wearing a sprig of jasmine on one’s wedding dress. Back matter describes Renaissance Florence and the rise of the Medici family. With links to art, history, and science, this book will please readers of all interests.