Tue, Mar 03, 2009 - Page 9 News List

A short history of Venice

By Richard Rogers  /  THE GUARDIAN , LONDON

Attila the Hun invades northern Italy in 452AD, razing the great Roman city of Aquileia and causing its population to flee to the small islands in the lagoon.

Pope Gregory II encourages Italian cities to claim independence from the Byzantine emperor. Venice’s council elects its first doge or leader, Orso Ipato, in 726.

With trading ports at the mercy of Norman raiding parties, the Byzantine emperor offers Venetians free trading rights throughout the empire from 1081 in return for naval assistance. Venice expands its control over the Adriatic.

The fourth crusade of 1202 comes under Doge Enrico Dandolo’s control. He leads a conquest of the Dalmatian coast and then Constantinople, sacking the city in 1204 and taking charge of the eastern Mediterranean.

Four wars with Genoa from 1255 for control of the Mediterranean end with the surrender of the Genoan fleet in 1380. Venice also enters the battle for mainland power, taking Treviso’s territories from Milan in 1329.

Pope Julius II forms the League of Cambrai in 1508 to halt Venice’s increasing expansion. Venice’s mercenary army is routed by French forces, losing many of its mainland cities. The next two centuries see the Ottoman empire take control of the Mediterranean from Venice, ending with their capture of Morea in 1714.

The Great Council of Venice dissolves the 1,070-year-old republic in 1797, surrendering to Napoleon’s army. Napoleon loots the city, then signs Venice over to Austrian control.

The great floods of 1966 wreak havoc on the city. An international campaign to restore the city begins.

This story has been viewed 4525 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top