- "We'll see just how tough the holdouts are when they're forced to go without food. If they want to eat, they'll accept Savonarola as their leader. How the Medici family can still hold any sway in this city is beyond me... To think, I once considered them my patrons. But that was before the prophet opened my eyes. Then I saw the evils of commerce and the division it creates. Savonarola will lead us into a new era. One of fraternity, equality, and justice. All that remains is for us to cast off the shackles of our troubled past - and accept the Lord as our saviour and true leader."
- ―The Merchant contemplating the state of Florence, 1497[src]
The Merchant (unknown – 1497) was one of Girolamo Savonarola's nine lieutenants, men that were put in charge to help Savonarola in controlling Florence. He worked with Savonarola, forcing the people to support Savonarola in exchange for food. As with so many others, Savonarola used an Apple of Eden to control the merchant.
Rise to power
When Savonarola took control of Florence, he assigned nine lieutenants. Each of these lieutenants had his own task, though most of the task were aimed at getting the citizens to follow Savonarola. The merchant withheld food supplies in an attempt to force citizens to follow Savonarola. If they wouldn't oblige, they would soon run out of food.
The merchant was stationed on a ship, and had many guards on the ship patrolling constantly, including two armored guards. At some point in 1497, the Assassin Ezio Auditore da Firenze set out to assassinate the merchant, in order to weaken Savonarola's rule.
Making sure not to attract any attention, the Assassin made his way onto the stern deck. From there, he leapt down on the unsuspecting merchant, and struck with his Hidden Blade. In his dying moments, the Merchant was shocked by his actions, but also claimed that the people needed to be coerced sometimes.