The duke of Calabria routs the Florentine army at Poggibonzi—Dismay in Florence on account of the defeat—Progress of the duke of Calabria—The Florentines wish for peace—Lorenzo de’ Medici determines to go to Naples to treat with the king—Lodovico Sforza, surnamed the Moor, and his brothers, recalled to Milan—Changes in the government of that city in consequence—The Genoese take Serezana—Lorenzo de’ Medici arrives at Naples—Peace concluded with the king—The pope and the Venetians consent to the peace—The Florentines in fear of the duke of Calabria—Enterprises of the Turks—They take Otranto—The Florentines reconciled with the pope—Their ambassadors at the papal court—The pope’s reply to the ambassadors—The king of Naples restores to the Florentines all the fortresses he had taken.
The army being thus reduced, without a leader, and disorder prevailing in every department, the duke of Calabria, who was with his forces near Sienna, resolved to attack them immediately. The Florentines, finding the enemy at hand, were seized with a sudden panic; neither their arms, nor their numbers, in which they were superior to their adversaries, nor their position, which was one of great strength, could give them confidence; but observing the dust occasioned by the enemy’s approach, without waiting for a sight of them, they fled in all directions, leaving their ammunition, carriages, and artillery to be taken by the foe. Such cowardice and disorder prevailed in the armies of those times, that the turning of a horse’s head or tail was sufficient to decide the fate of an expedition. This defeat loaded the king’s troops with booty, and filled the Florentines with dismay; for the city, besides the war, was afflicted with pestilence, which prevailed