Buoso Donati, a rich elderly man, lies near death in his covered bed, while his relatives gather around to mourn his passing. Even though they feign mourning, they are much more interested in the contents of his will. Betto, Buoso’s cousin, reveals that he heard that Buoso may have given his entire fortune to a monastery. The family members are perturbed so they frantically search the house to find the will. Rinuccio finds it, but is not concerned, confident that Buoso has left them all a great amount of money. Before he reads the will, he pleads with his Aunt Zita to allow him to marry Lauretta, the daughter of Gianni Schicchi. Zita slyly tells him that if Buoso has left them all rich, he may marry whoever he wants.
However, the rumor turns out to be true and the relatives begin shedding real tears at the news. Rinuccio suggests to the group that Lauretta’s father, a self-made con-man, could help them (Firenze è come un albero fiorito). Having sent word to Schicchi and Lauretta,
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