F. C. (Francis Cotterell) Hodgson.

Venice in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries; a sketch of Ventian history from the conquest of Constantinople to the accession of Michele Steno, A.D. 1204-1400 online

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inTthe thirteenth and
fourteenth centuries

OF MICHELE STENO. A.D. 1204- 1400








[All rights reserved]

H 9\

Printed by Eallantyne, Hanson &* Co.
At the Ballantyne Press, Edinburgh


Nine years ago I published a volume on the Early History
of Venice, which I brought down to the conquest of Con-
stantinople in A.D. 1204. Very few copies of this have
been sold, and some of the English reviews of it found it
very dry. But, on the whole, I had no reason to complain
of the treatment it received from the critics, which was
indeed better than it deserved. Only one review was dis-
tinctly condemnatory : this was the work of a scholar well
versed in Venetian and in general mediaeval history, who was
apparently an accomplished disciple of the late Professor
Freeman, and had imbibed not only much of the learning
of his master, but also a strong infusion of his literary
manners. I was, on the other hand, much gratified by the
very kind appreciation of my book that was contributed by
an accomplished English student of Italian literature to the
Athenceum. I was still more pleased, and not a little sur-
prised, to receive from German scholars two notices of my
book, which, while not sparing criticism, treated it as a
work of interest to European learning. Of these reviews,
one was contributed to the Deutsche Literaturzeitu?ig of the
24th of May 1902 by Dr. Ernst Gerland of Homburg, who
is or was, I believe, editor of the Byzantinische Zeitschrift
and author of a Geschichte des lateinischen Kaiserreichs von
Konstantmopel, the first volume of which has appeared
since his review of my book ; the other by Dr. H. Kretzsch-
mayr to the Mittheilungen des Jnstituts fur osterreichische
Geschichtsforschung in Wien. I wish to thank both of these


gentlemen not only for their courteous treatment of my
book, but for sending me their reviews, which have given
me many hints and referred me to recent German authori-
ties that have, I hope, been of use in my present book.

I have found some difficulty in deciding how far to
extend my narrative over other fields than that of Venetian
history proper. I have claimed in my twelfth chapter that
the events that formed the sequel of the conquest of Con-
stantinople may properly be included in Venetian history.
Perhaps the quotations from Browning's "Sordello" in
chap. iii. may be less justifiable, and I also may have gone
into too many details in my fourth chapter as to Venetian
legislation, and in my thirteenth as to merchants and
missionaries in Cathay.

I am not at all confident that I have given a correct
account of the famous " Serrata del Consiglio." I have
read much about it in Venetian accounts written when
the constitution that it established was still in working
order, and in German monographs written since the
archives at Venice and elsewhere have been opened to
scientific examination. Neither Dr. Maximilian Claar's
elaborate work, Die Etihvicklung der venezianischen Verfas-
sung ; nor the chapter in Count Correr's Venezia e le Sue
Lagutie, which Italian writers look upon as of the highest
authority on constitutional questions ; nor the old Italian
accounts given us by Donato Giannotti and Cardinal Con-
tarini appear to me to explain satisfactorily the change that
Gradenigo made in the election of the Great Council. I am
not sure that Lebret's account, written (as I have remarked
in the text) at a time when the aristocratic constitution was
still in operation, is not the most satisfactory.

Of the original authorities for my present period I need
not say much. Every one who has had occasion to con-
sult the Chronicles contained in Muratori's great series of
Rerum Italicarum Scriptores knows how excellent many of
them are. Of those whose works I have had to read,


Andrea Dandolo and his continuators are good, business-
like writers, but do not possess any of the graces of style,
the terseness, or the naivete, or the picturesque detail that
we find in such writers as Ramon Muntaner, whom I have
called the Xenophon of the Catalonian Anabasis, or
Rolandini of Padua, or Galeazzo Gataro, who wrote a
Chronicle of Padua under the Carraras,^ or still more in
Martino da Canale (a writer not included in Muratori's
collection), of whom I have made so much use in this
volume. Rolandini of Padua - was town clerk, Gataro and
his son and continuator Andrea were advocates. The
Cortusii, Gulielmo and Alberghetto, were also distinguished
citizens of Padua, an uncle and nephew, whose Annals,
without any study of elegance, are authentic records of an
interesting period.^ Martino da Canale was a clerk, as we
have seen,* in "the Board of the Sea," that is, of Customs,
at Venice. Giorgio Stella was in the service of the Genoese
repubUc, and his father had been chancellor ; ^ the Villani
— Giovanni, Matteo, and Philippo— had held high civil
offices in Florence.'' The chroniclers of these times seem
to have been not so often in orders as notaries — that is,
men of business of a good education, who were from their
position familiar with current history and often behind the
scenes. I have omitted to mention Laurentius de Monacis,
Chancellor of Crete, a Venetian citizen, as the law required,
a writer whom we have constantly met with in this volume,
a grave man of high character, whose judgments on the

^ Chronicon Patavinum Italica Lingua conscriptum auclore Andrea
de Gataris, &c. , in J\. I. S., xvii. cols. 7-904. This includes also the
work of Andrea's father, Galeazzo.

^ Rolandini Patavini de Factis in Marchia Tarvisina, Libri xii., in
A\ I. S., viii. cols. 157-360.

* Cortusii Patavini Duo, in A'. I. S., xii. cols. 767-988.

* Infra, p. 173.

* Georgii Stellre Annales Genuenses . . . per Johannem Stellam
ejus Fratem continuati, in A'. I. S., xvii. cols. 951- 131 8.

* Johannis Villani Florentini Hist. Universalis, occupies cols. 9-1002
in J?. I. S., xiii. It is in Italian. Matthrei Villanii ejusque filii
Philippi Historia (also in Italian) is in /^. I. S., xiv. cols. 9-770.


events he had seen passing are always of value. ^ The last
of the chroniclers from Muratori's collection with whom I
have been much concerned is Daniele di Chinasso, a good
and apparently accurate writer, of whom nothing is known
but that he was a native of Treviso, living at Venice during
the war of Chioggia, which he relates ; and that his history
was thought so highly of by Andrea Gataro that he pro-
posed to insert it bodily in his chronicle, and had copied it
out at length for this purpose.^ The only one of the
chronicles in Muratori of which it has been necessary to
express any doubts is the Vita Caroli Zeni, the authenticity
of which I have discussed in a note on p. 509.^

In the view I have taken of the Venetian constitution I
have relied much more on the old Italian writers — Donato
Giannotti, a Florentine exile at Venice, Cardinal Contarini,
and others — than on Daru, and modern French, German,
and Italian writers. Daru wrote under instructions from
his master. Napoleon, to make out a case in justification
of the destruction of the venerable republic. Venice had
been very far from a monarchy, and could not be vilified in
the same way as the old monarchies of Europe. It had
borne for centuries the name of republic, and in many
ways had, it could not be denied, done honour to the
name. But nothing could be farther from the ideals of
Rousseau and Robespierre than such a republic as A^enice.
It was not founded on the doctrine of equality, the doctrine
that every man's opinion on the political questions that
had to be solved by governments was as good as his neigh-
bour's. It held, on the contrary, that the art of governing

^ Only a fragment of Laurentiiis de Monacis is to be found in R. I. S.,
viii. (the part dealing with the career of Ecelino da Romano). The
remainder was published separately by Plaminio Corner, the author of
EcclesicB Venetie, as an appendix to vol. viii. of Muratori.

2 Danielis Chinatii Tarvisini belli apud Fossam Clodiam et alibi
inter Venetos et Genuenses gesti anno MCCCLXXXVIII. et sequentibus
Italico sermone accurata descriptio, in J\. J. S., xv. cols. 697-804.

•^ Vita Caroli Zeni . . . auciore Jacobo Zenoejusnepote, in A\ /. J.,
xix. cols. 207-372.


one's fellow-creatures well was one that could be acquired
best by apprenticeship to the work of government, that
those whose wealth gave them leisure to work at this
apprenticeship from their youth upwards were most likely
to make progress in it, and that a capacity for doing the
work of government was inherited from fathers who had
learned to do it well, just as, to use Horace's words, in
oxen and horses the virtues of sires were transmitted to
their progeny. This was the fundamental principle of
Venetian education and training, and was justified by the
qualities of the grave patricians who commanded the fleets
and armies of Venice, who managed her diplomacy, or who
established and conducted the great mercantile undertak-
ings that were so powerful an instrument in advancing the
civilisation of the world. I have not therefore thought it
necessary to apologise for the Venetians, who disbelieved
in democracy and in the natural right of unskilled men to
govern themselves and their fellows ill, and who did not
hit upon the modern doctrine that justice requires every
one to have some representative placed in power by his
vote who will look after his interests for fear of losing his
important and advantageous position as a representative.
And yet the governing classes of A^enice impressed such
observers as Rudolph of Habsburg and Petrarch by their
justice more than by any other quality ; just as men of
business in our own time, who have to obtain parliamen-
tary powers for any great undertaking, find the hereditary
upper house more just and more intelligent than the elected
house of representatives.

Of modern helps for the study of Venetian history I have
to a large extent had to rely on the same writers as in my
former book. Ducange has not been so constantly referred
to as for the earlier history, nor Tafel and Thomas. Carl
Hopfs great "History of Mediaeval Greece" has been a
more constant guide, whose only weakness is that he is too
thorough, too exhaustive, and too careless of the value of


arrangement and generalisation. Heyd's " History of the
Levant Trade of the Middle Ages," which I have used, as
every one does, in the improved and extended French
translation, is as thorough a book as Hopfs, and far more
attractive. In the affairs of Cyprus, which occupy much of
the later chapters of my book, the Comte de Mas Latrie is
an indispensable and most sufficient guide.

I ought to add that what I said in the Introduction to
my former book did less than justice to the great work of
Romanin, which I have learnt to trust more and more.
He is not a master of style, but his Storia Docume7itata is
an early model, and a very good one, of the kind of history
founded on original documents that is becoming every
year more and more the most useful and highly appreci-
ated product of historical work.

It remains for me only to express my thanks : (i) To the
Trustees of the British Museum for permission to reproduce
Furlani's Plan of Constantinople, and several of the prints
from Franco's Habiti. (2) To the Society for Promotion
of Hellenic Studies, and particularly to Mr. John ff. Baker
Penoyre, its Secretary, and ^Ir. F. W. Hasluck, for very
courteously allowing me to use the Society's photograph
of Famagusta Cathedral, and those of Cyzicus, the Euripus,
Modone, and Monembasia by Mr. Hasluck.


I. The Latin Empire of Romania . . i

II. The Restored Greek Empire and
Genoa — Venice in Negropont and
Crete . . . . . .29

III. The Emperor Frederic II. . . . 53


LATION ...... 87

V. Ecelino DA Romano . . . -105

VI. Rivalry of Venice and Genoa in the

Levant 120

VII. Form of Election of Doge — Homage

OF the Arti 140

VIII. Venetian Supremacy in Adriatic . 163

IX. The "Serrata del Consiglio," 1299 . 187

X. Troubles at Ferrara — Conspiracy of
Tiepolo and Creation of Council
of Ten 205

XI. Rivalries of Anjou and Aragon, and

of Venice and Genoa . . .241

XII. The Catalonian Company at Constanti-
nople AND Athens .... 260

XIII. Marco Polo and his Successors . . 297


XIV. The Beginnings of the Terra Ferma
AND the New Palace

XV. The Age of Andrea Dandolo

XVI. Marin Faliero

XVII. Peter I. of Cyprus

XVIII. The Carraras at Padua

XIX. War of Chioggia

XX. Venice and the Visconti

XXI. The Senate of Venice .






Plan of Venice ....

Plan of Constantinople

EuRiPus (Negropont) ....

Fro7?t a photograph supplied by the Hellenic Society


From a photograph supplied by the Helletiic Society.

Facade of Santi Giovanni e Paolo .

Procession in Piazza San Marco

The Pergamo or Capitello in San

Doge-elect carried round Piazza

Sitting of the Great Council .

Ballottini with Urns and Ballots .

MODONE. ......

From a photograph supplied by the Hellenic Society.


From a photograph sicpplied by the Hellenic Society.

Harbour of Zara ....

Doge viewing Bull-bait from Balcony
OF Palace .....



To face page 30

.. 39











Palazzi Farsetti e Loredan (Cornaro


Summer Nights on the Lagoon .
Famagosta Cathedral .

From a photograph supplied by the Hellenic So,

Chioggia .....

Tomb of Doge Michele Morosini

Hall of Collegio : Doge and Signoria
giving Audience to Legate .

To face page 440






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, 42, „ II, for'

, 47, „ 8, for'

, 48, „ 33./"' '

, 56, „ 30. M '

, 148, „ 2.2, for '

, 378, „ 22, for'

, 436, „ 35, >^'

, 466, „ 2

Online LibraryF. C. (Francis Cotterell) HodgsonVenice in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries; a sketch of Ventian history from the conquest of Constantinople to the accession of Michele Steno, A.D. 1204-1400 → online text (page 1 of 62)