Francia Media, Italia

Mediaeval Italy bridges three different political and cultural spheres:
Fiefs of Italy
The Papacy
Kingdom of Lombardy
Kingdom of Italy
Kingdom of Sardinia
Duchy of Benevento
Duchy of Spoleto
Duchy of Modena
Archbishopric of Ravenna
Archbishopric of Milan
Duchy of Milan
Duchy of Tuscany
Duchy of Mantua
Duchy of Parma
Duchy of Urbino
Margravate of Tuscany
Margravate of Spoleto
Margravate of Montferrat
Principality of Verona
Republic of Venice
Republic of Genoa
 (1) the Kingdom of Lombardy, or Italy, in the north, (2) the Papacy in the center, and (3) the Kingdoms of Sicily and Naples in the South.

While there was such a division quite early in the history of Italy, with (1) Celts in the north, (2) Etruscans and Latium in the center, and (3) obscure indigenous people surrounded by Greek colonists in the south, the distinctive Mediaeval division of the country began with the invasion of the Lombards in 568. This was after Justinian and his great general Belisarius had retrieved the country from the Ostrogoths (536-553). The Lombards secured the north and broke through into the south; but this left a Roman corridor from Rome to Ravenna, and Lombard rule south of this only consisted of the montane Duchies of Benevento and Spoleto. The rest of the south, especially the littoral areas, principal cities, and all of Sicily, remained in Roman hands. When the Lombards finally took Ravenna in 751, Pope Stephen III appealed to the Franks. In response, King Pepin "donated" the Rome-Ravenna corridor, the Exarchate of Ravenna, to the Papacy in 754; and, after defeating the Lombards in 756, he delivered government of this area to the Pope. This established the Papal States, which survived until 1870 -- 1116 years. The Lombards were finally overthrown by Charlemagne in 774, and the Kingdom remained part of the Carolingian Empire until 888. It was then independent under Carolingian in-laws until conquered by Otto I of Germany in 961. An independent Italian Kingdom then did not exist until 1861 -- exactly 900 years later.

The policy of the Papacy was, understandably, to prevent the unification of Italy, which would have endangered Papal power. For a while, this was not much of an issue. The South remained in Lombard and Roman hands and constituted an area that was politically and culturally very different from Francia. It was culturally still part of Romania, and indeed there were still many Greek speakers, especially in Sicily, who had been living there since Greek colonization began in the 8th century BC. This was first compromised by the Islamic conquest of Sicily (827-878). Next came the Norman conquest of southern Italy, which then extended also to Sicily. The Normans finished the expulsion of the Romans in 1071, and of Islâm in 1072. This established the region as a distinct part of the Periphery of Francia. It would be the Regnum (Regno), the center of European politics and culture under the brilliant Emperor Frederick II of Hohenstaufen, the Stupor Mundi, "Wonder of the World." The modern tourist might be puzzled to find the massive prophyry sarcophagus of a Mediaeval German Emperor in Palermo. But that was Frederick's capital.

The Regnum did not include Sardinia, but then Sardinia's status is often ambiguous. Since it ended up in the hands of Aragón, it can be treated as part of the Periphery. Later, it passed to Savoy, which puts it in the Core of Francia. This is the kind of ambiguity characteristic through the Middle Ages of Italy as a whole. Spoleto, which begins as one of the detached southern Lombard Duchies, becomes more fully integrated into Lombardy and Francia after the Carolingian conquest -- rendering its own assignment, like Sardinia, ambiguous.
Fiefs of the Regnum,
the Regno, the Mezzogiorno
Kingdom of Sicily & Naples
Anjevian Kingdom of Sicily
Aragonese Kingdom of Sicily
Anjevian Kings of Naples
Aragonese Kingdom of Naples
Savoyard Kingdom of Sicily
Kingdom of the Two Sicilies
Kingdom of Sardinia
Princes of Benevento & Salerno
Princes of Capua, I
Princes of Capua, II
Dukes of Benevento & Spoleto
Dukes of Naples, Amalfi, & Gaeta
Counts of Capua
Counts of Aversa
Knights of Malta

The Regnum was unusual among the territories of Francia in that the Normans received it as a fief directly from the Papacy. That was a theoretical curiosity -- ironically part of the settlement after Pope Leo IX had been defeated and captured at the Battle of Civitate in 1053 -- but in practice had little effect on the behavior either of the Normans or of Frederick II. It had some significance when the Pope, as suzerain, got Charles of Anjou to exterminate the Hohenstaufen. But then Sicily revolted against Charles in 1282 and attached itself, to the chagrin and fury of the Pope, to Aragón. Eventually, Sicily, Sardinia, and Naples all ended up in the hands of the Kings of Aragón, and so finally the Kings of Spain.

Even Napoleon, although annexing Rome itself and ruling the north as the King of Italy, kept the south as a separate Kingdom. The Congress of Vienna restored the Bourbons, who had maintained themselves in Sicily, to the whole of Sicily and Naples, now called the Kingdom of the "Two Sicilies". This was the situation until 1860, when Garibaldi landed in Sicily with the intention of reunited Italy. The Kings of Sardinia became the Kings of an Italy, now joining the north and south for the first time since the Lombards invaded in 568 -- 1293 years. This left part of the original dividing line, Rome itself, still in the hands of the Pope, defended by French troops. The capital of Italy was temporarily at Florence (after another brief stint at Pisa -- now a matter for trivia questions). When Napoleon III withdrew his troops in 1870, to use them against Prussia, Rome was occupied, despite the protests of the Pope, and made capital of the completely reunited country. The only exception to Italian unification visible on the map here is Corsica, which was sold by the Republic of Genoa to France in 1768. Although Italy entered World War I to regain Italia Irredenta, "Unredeemed Italy," this ended up meaning the Tyrol, Trieste, and Istria -- Austrian possessions -- not Corsica. Italy abandoned its alliance with Germany and Austria, from which a victory might had netted Corsica (or even Savoy and Nice, ceded to France in 1860), in order to seek, and win, the Austrian areas (1918). Italy returned to a German alliance in World War II, and ended up losing the Slavic speaking part of Istria to Yugoslavia. In modern Europe, there now seems little prospect of Corsica ever returning to Italian rule, although a movement for detaching Corsica from France exists.

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The Margraves of Tuscany and Spoleto, 812-1115 AD

The Margraves of Tuscany
Boniface I812-813
Vacant, 813-828
Boniface II828-834
Vacant, 845-847
Adalbert I847-884
Vacant, 884-886
Adalbert II886-915
Guido/Wido (III)915-930
Boso of Arles931-936
Boniface III1001-1012
Vacant, 1012-1014
Boniface IV
of Canossa
Beatrice of Bar1053-1076
of Spoleto
Wido (Guy) I842-866
Lambert I866-879
Wido II879-c.880
Wido (Guy) IIIc.880-894
Lambert II894-898
Wido IV898-900
Duke of
Alberic I900-915
Alberic II928-954
Berenger II949-961
King of Italy,
John XII
954-c. 962
d. 964
Otto of SaxonyKing of
Germany, 936
King of Italy,
951, 961
Emperor, 962
Spoleto Imperial Fief
Tuscany was one of the major divisions of the Kingdom of Italy under Carolingian rule and later. After the death of Charles the Fat in 888, Italy was largely ruled by local nobility until the Ottonians arrived. A Margrave of Tuscany never became King of Italy, but the genealogy below shows the close relationship of the family to the Margraves of Spoleto and Ivrea who did.

At right are the contemporary Margraves of Spoleto. Spoleto had been one of the semi-autonomous Lombard Duchies of Southern Italy, under rather closer control of the Lombard Kings in the north than the more distant, and durable, Duchy of Benevento. Some dates and numberings in the table, from Bruce R. Gordon's Regnal Chronologies, are contradicted by the genealogy in The New Cambridge Medieval History, Volume III, c.900-c.1024 [Timothy Reuter, editor, Cambridge, 1999, p.702], given below. Alberic II in Gordon and Anscar II (Margrave of Ivrea) of the History seems to have divided Spoleto between them. I have been able to sort out some of this using the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [Andreas Thiele, R. G. Fischer Verlag, Part 2, Second Edition, 1997]. But it seems to be a very obscure period, and I have not been able to account for the identity of all the figures listed by Gordon and the History.

The line of the Margraves of Spoleto shifts to Alberic of Fermo or of Camerino in 900. This line becomes entangled with the Tusculani, in association with which we find no less then eight Popes. Alberic's grandson, Pope John XII, crowns Otto I Emperor but also cedes Spoleto to him.

This genealogy doesn't cover much of the history of Tuscany, but does show the interesting marriages of the Margraves of Spoleto, Tuscany, and Ivrea.

In the later days of the Margravate, it became a battlefield of the conflict between the German Emperors and the Popes. The final family of Margraves was of the house of Attoni, founded by Atto Adalbert, son of the Baron Siegfried of Lucca, who helped Queen Adeleide of Italy escape the attentions of King Berengar II, protecting her at Canossa castle. When she married the King (then Emperor) Otto I, he granted Atto a County of Canossa. Atto's grandson, Boniface, then succeeded to Tuscany. Two years after Boniface was assassinated in 1052, the widowed Marchioness, Beatrice, married Godfrey II (the Bearded), Duke of Upper (1044-1047) and Lower Lorraine (1065-1069). In 1055 the Emperor Henry III then kidnapped Beatrice and her daughter, Matilda, but before he died (1056) the Emperor reconciled with Godfrey and released the women. When Godfrey died in 1069, Matilda married his son Godfrey III (the Hunchback), Duke of Lower Lorraine (1069-1076). When her child by Godfrey died, Matilda returned to Italy.

When her mother Beatrice died in 1076, Matilda succeeded to the Margravate and took the side of the Pope Gregory VII in the Investiture Controversy. The Emperor Henry IV stood barefoot in the snow outside Matilda's family castle at Canossa in 1077. In 1089 the 43-year-old Matilda married the 17-year-old Welf V, of the principal German family of Papal supporters. The marriage didn't work out, and when Matilda and Welf separated in 1095, this complicated the Imperial-Papal conflict, since the Emperor took the side of the Welfs. In 1110, a confused settlement was patched up. The Popes were so grateful for Matilda's support that eventually, in 1634, her body was moved to St. Peter's Basilica.

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The Margraves of Montferrat
and Kings of Thessalonica, 961-1573 AD

Montferrat, Monferrato in Italian, was a domain in the north of Italy, near modern Alessandria. Originally a County, it was elevated to a Margravate in the course the transition from the rule of Berengar II, King of Italy, to that of Otto I of Germany, who was then crowned Roman Emperor. Presumably Count Aledram benefited from the conflict, ending up as an adherent of Otto.

I have chosen to use the term "margrave." In feudal usage, this is equivalent to "marquess" in English and "marquis" in French. "Marquis" is the term most frequently seen in relation to Montferrat. Since the Italian form of the name "Montferrat" is also rarely seen in English, one is often left with the false impression that this is a French, not an Italian, feudatory.

This genealogy is entirely from the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [Andreas Thiele, R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 1997, pp. 257-261]. The early dates seem consistently uncertain.

The family achieves prominence with the Crusades. Of the sons of William VI, two married Queens of Jerusalem. William VII married Sibylla and fathered King Baldwin V of Jerusalem. Sibylla's second husband, Guy of Lusignan, was the King of Jerusalem who lost the battle of Hattin to Saladin in 1187. Conrad marries Queen Isabella. Their daughter Maria married John Brienne, who acted as King of Jerusalem and then Emperor of Romania. Their daughter Yolanda married the German Emperor and "Wonder of the World" (Stupor Mundi) Frederick II.

The biggest splash, however, was made by their brother Boniface. He had been in service in Romania with his other brother Rainier -- both of them were made Caesars by the Emperor Andronicus I Comnenus (before, of course, the Emperor was lynched for his tyrannies by the furious citizens of Constantinople). Boniface had fought at Hattin and with Richard the Lionheart on the Third Crusade. Then in 1201 he was elected leader for the Fourth Crusade. This, of course, ended up going poorly.

The Crusaders didn't have enough money to pay Venice for passage to Palestine. But the Venetians offered passage in exchange for a couple of little jobs. First was to take the Dalmatian city of Zara. This was done, and Pope Innocent III excommunicated the entire force for attacking Christians instead of Muslims. The next task was to restore Isaac II on the throne in Constantinople, which was accomplished in 1203, under the direction of his son, who was also installed as Alexius IV. When Alexius was unable to pay off Venice and the Crusaders as promised, and was then overthrown by the outraged Greeks in 1204, the Crusaders took and sacked the City.

This appalling deed destroyed the last bastion of continuity with the Classical World and ushered in the brief and pathetic Latin Empire in Romania. Boniface was the obvious choice as Emperor in Constantinople but his election was vetoed by Venice, which didn't want anyone so vigorous or competent. But it was left to Boniface to reduce the rest of Romania to Latin authority. With his capture of the second city of the Empire, Thessalonica, he made himself King thereof. He then established feudal dependencies as the Duchy of Athens (1205-1456) and the Principality of Achaea (1205-1432). His own rule was short-lived, with him dying at the hand, or at least the forces, of the Bulgar Tsar Kalojan in 1207. His minor son Demetrius barely had time to come of age before Thessalonica was taken by Epirus in 1224.

Demetrius himself was childless, so the title to Thessalonica passed to his nephew Boniface II back in Montferrat. That might have been the end of it, and the claim to Thessalonica could have floated around for years like many such claims, if not for the marriage of Boniface's granddaughter Yolanda, who fell heir to Montferrat with the death of her brother in 1305. Yolanda married the Emperor Andronicus II Palaeologus. His son by his first marriage would succeed as the Emperor Michael IX; but now Yolanda's son Theodore would succeed as Margrave of Montferrat. Their other son, John, is listed by Andreas Thiele as the "titular" King of Thessalonica; but now, of course, the claim to Thessalonica has returned to the Sovereign who actually holds the territory, John's father Andronicus. John's title thus now derived from the relevant suzerain; and while its possession may have been largely honorary, like the Heir of England being the Prince of Wales, John, who was already a Despot of the Empire, was going to be exercising a lot more authority on the spot than any "titular" authorities off in Francia would ever be able to do.

This extraordinary turn means that subsequent Margraves of Montferrat are of the Imperial Palaeologi family. The irony of this is considerable. The domain of the leader of the Fourth Crusade passes to the family of the Greeks who ejected the Latins from Constantinople and ruled as the last Emperors of Romania. In 1536 Montferrat passes to the husband of the Heiress Margaret, Duke Frederick II Gonzaga of Mantua (Mantova). Under Frederick's son William (XII), Montferrat itself was raised to the status of a Duchy, but then in 1708 it was absorbed by Savoy. The Gonzaga line, illustrious in its own right, was absorbed by the Hapsburgs.

However, Margaret was not the only descendant of Montferrat. After her brother Boniface IV died in 1530, the Margravate passed to her uncle John George. John George had a son, Flaminio. Andreas Thiele lists Flaminio as legitimate, and this confused me for a long time; but apparently Flaminio wasn't legitimate. He wasn't going to inherit Montferrat, which passed to Margaret and her Gonzaga husband. Flaminio lived and had two sons. Thiele cites one descendant living in 1900. Information on line gives the descendants of the elder, Theodore, down to the present. These are the Paleologhi-Oriundi. The direct line can be examined on a popup. The four most recent descendants are younger than I am. With collateral lines that are not shown, one is left to wonder just how many Italian Paleologhi there are today -- bend sinister descendants of the Imperial Palaeologi of Montferrat.

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The Captains-General, Margraves,
and Dukes of Mantua, 1328-1708 AD

Republic of Mantua, c.1272-1309
Captains-General of Mantua
Rinaldo PassarinoLord, 1309-1328
Luigi, Ludovico (Louis) Gonzaga1328-1360
Guido (Guy)1360-1369
Ludovico II1369-1382
(Francis) I
Count, 1382-1407
Margraves of Mantua
(John Francis)
Ludovico III1444-1478
(Frederick) I
(John Francis) II
Dukes of Mantua
(Frederick) II
Margrave of
Francesco III1540-1550
Duke of
(Vincent) I
Francesco IV1612
Vincenzo II1626-1627
War of the Mantuan
Succession, 1628-1631
Carlo (Charles)
I of Nevers
Carlo II1637-1665
Ferdinando Carlo
(Charles III)
Mantua to Emperor,
Montferrat to Savoy,
Mantua (Mantova) was a city and small domain in the Po Valley, wedged in between
Venice, Modena, and Milan. The family of the Gonzagas, which emerges from a republican Mantua to be the Margraves and Dukes of the domain, are noteworthy for their patronage in the Renaissance and for their marriages.

Francesco II (also Gianfrancesco, John Francis, II or III) married Isabella d'Este (the house of Modena). Andreas Thiele says, "Sie macht den Hof v. Mantua zum strahlenden Mittelpunkt der italien. Renaissance(!)" -- "She made the court of Mantua into the shining center of the Italian Renaissance" [see Thiele below, p.249].

Federico II married Margaret of Montferrat. Margaret was the heiress of Montferrat, which brought the Margravate, soon to be a Duchy also, to Mantua -- though it was separated from Mantua by the territory of the much more powerful Milan. But Margaret was actually also the heiress of the Roman Palaeologi family, who had become the heirs of Montferrat. Boniface of Montferrat had led the Fourth Crusade against Constantinople and then become King of Thessalonica. Nevertheless, Yolanda (d.1317), the heiress of Montferrat, married the Emperor Andronicus II Palaeologus, and it was her son Theodore who inherited Montferrat.

Federico's son Ludovico (or Luigi) married the heiress of Nevers. This was ultimately a possession of Duke Philip the Bold of Burgundy and came to the Gonzagas by way of Cleves & Mark-Altena.

The Gonzagas of Nevers became Dukes of Mantua in the War of the Mantuan Succession (1628-1631). The succession of Charles (Carlo) I of Nevers was disputed by his cousin Ferrante (Ferdiniand) II of Guastalla, and by the Count of Savoy, Charles Emanuel I (1580-1630), just because his grand-daughter, Maria, was the child of Duke Francesco IV of Mantua, and was thus, according to him, the heiress of Montferrat, which was detached from Mantua and adjacent to Savoy. Since Maria ended up marrying the son of Charles of Nevers (also Charles), the Savoyard claims ended up in the hands of Nevers. However, what decided the conflict were the roles of France and Austria in what amounted here to a sideshow of the Thirty Years War. The Austrian candidate, Ferrante of Guastalla, ended up put aside for Charles of Nevers, despite an Imperial army taking and sacking Mantua itself.

The Gonzagas were made Margraves by the Emperor Sigismund, and then Dukes by the great Emperor Charles V. When the male line failed (1708), right in the middle of the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1714), the Emperor Joseph I took possession of Mantua, while Montferrat passed to his ally Savoy, per the claims of Charles Emanuel. The Nevers and Guastalla lines had just been united in the last Duke, Ferdinand Charles IV, but without children, this was for nought. The Dukes of Guastalla, who might have claimed the whole Mantuan inheritance, were ignored -- again as a sideshow of the larger war.

Meanwhile Eleonore, a granddaughter of Duke Carlo I, had made a very good marriage, to the Emperor Ferdinand III. This was Ferdinand's third marriage, so it did not contribute any heirs to Austria, but their own daughter Eleonore, after marriage to an ephemeral King of Poland, married Duke Charles IV of Lorraine. This led to their grandson, the Duke Francis III, who then married the great Maria Theresa, the Heiress of Austria, founding the house of Hapsburg-Lorraine. All the subsequent Hapsburgs are thus descendants, not only of Gonzaga, but of the Imperial Palaeologi. I imagine that there are others, but this is the only line of modern descent from the Palaeologi that I have noticed.

Ludovico III Gonzaga and family, by Andrea Mantegna (c.1431-1506), fresco at San Giorgio Castle, Mantua, c.1470; the Margrave is being informed that his son Francesco has been named a Cardinal

Standing behind his mother in the famous painting above is Rodolfo, who will be made Margrave of Castiglione, Goffredo, and Solferino. He would become a condottiero and be killed at the Battle of Fornovo (1495), as Charles VIII of France was invading Italy. His descendants, however, became a cadet line of the Gonzagas, as we see in the genealogy at right. The greatest claim to fame of this line may be that it leads to a Saint, Aloysius (Aloisio, Luigi) de Gonzaga. He joined the Jesuits and died at Rome, only 23 years old. Nevertheless, it is after him that institutions like Gonzaga University (Spokane, Washington, 1887) are named.

The Princes of Castiglione, who might have pressed claims for the Mantuan inheritance themselves in 1708, were dispossessed by force. Ferdinando (Ferrante) II died in exile in Venice, borrowing money to live on.

The list of Captains-General, Margraves, and Dukes is originally from the Oxford Dynasties of the World by John E. Morby [Oxford University Press, 1989, 2002, p.107], with help from Bruce R. Gordon's Regnal Chronologies. The genealogical diagram beginning with Gianfrancesco is based on the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, by Andreas Thiele, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 1997], now with help from Wikipedia. The map of Italy is adapted from April Blood, by Lauro Martines [Oxford, 2003].

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Counts and Dukes of Urbino, 1226-1631 AD

Montefeltro Counts
& Dukes of Urbino
BuonconteCount of Montefeltro,
Urbino 1226-1241
Papal Rule, 1285-1294
Federico I1296-1322
Papal Rule, 1322-1324
Federico II1360-1363
Papal Rule, 1369-1375
Duke, 1443-1444
(Federigo) III
Duke, 1474-1482
Guidubaldo I1482-1508
Della Rovere Dukes of Urbino
Francesco Maria I1508-1538
Guidubaldo II1538-1574
Francesco Maria II1574-1621,
Federico Ubaldo1621-1623
Papal Rule, 1631
Urbino is a city not far south of San Marino. This is on the Adriatic side of the Apennines in a district, the Marches, that used to be part of the
Papal States. Despite what might seem its remote and isolated location, Urbino nevertheless managed to become one of the centers of the Renaissance.

Urbino was no less than the birthplace of the divine Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio, 1483-1520), to whom we owe, among so much else, the extraordinary "School of Athens." Raffael spent his more productive years in Florence and Rome (patronized by the della Rovere warrior Pope Julius II), but his youth was in Urbino where his father was a Court painter for the Duke Federico (Federigo) III, himself a great patron who drew artists and architects to Urbino. Among these were Bartolomeo de Giovanni Corradini (Fra Carnevale, d.1484), Donato Bramante (the architect of St. Peter's in Rome, d.1514), and Piero della Francesca (d.1492). Urbino now contains the National Gallery of the Marches museum. Federico began his career as a successful condottiero mercenary, including work for Francesco I Sforza of Milan. This side of his life was inhibited when he lost an eye in a tournament. He subsequently had surgeons remove the bridge of his nose, as we see in his portraits, to improve the field of vision in his remaining eye. I would not have had such confidence in the safety of such a procedure at the time. His later military career, equally splendid, was mainly in his own interest as Duke of Urbino.

At right we see the front of the grand Palazzo Ducale built by Federico, which overlooks the lands to the south, which include the small domain possessed by Federico before he inherited Urbino, after the death of his half-brother.

Federico's own origin is obscure enough that some believe he was not an illegitimate son of Count Guidantonio, but the illegitimate son of a daughter of Guidantonio, then adopted and legimated by Guidantonio. Federico's mother otherwise seems to be unknown.

Fiefs in the Papal States were often granted by Popes to their relatives. With Urbino, Count Federico is made a Duke by Pope Sixtus IV, Francesco della Rovere, even as Federico's daughter Giovanna marries Sixtus' nephew Giovanni. The son of Giovanna and Giovanni, Francesco Maria, then succeeds to the Duchy, which is then in the possession of the della Roveres until the male line fails and the territory reverts to the Papacy.

Other genealogical connections of the della Rovere Popes are given with the list of Popes. Francesco Maria II married a granddaughter, Lucretia, of Lucretia Borgia, whose children otherwise failed to continue the line of d'Este in Modena. Finally, the della Roveres intermarry with the Medici of Florence, whose own line then shortly afterwards dies out.

Federico's son Guidubaldo became the patron of Baldassare Castiglione (1478-1529), the author of The Book of the Courtier (Il Cortegiano, 1528). Giudubaldo and Castiglione are remembered by W.B. Yeats in his poem, "To a Wealthy Man, who promised a second Subscription to the Dublin Municipal Gallery if it were proved the People wanted Pictures."

And Guidobaldo, when he made
That grammar school of courtesies
Where wit and beauty learned their trade
Upon Urbino’s windy hill,
Had sent no runners to and fro
That he might learn the shepherds’ will.

Here we see Federico, with a young Guidobaldo by his side, probably by Pedro Berruguete (1450-1504), c.1475, quietly reading -- but in full armor. Kenneth Clark comments that the armor was necessary, since the security of Federico's domain depended strongly depended on his abilities as a warrior.

Guidobaldo failed to produce any heirs, and his nephew Francesco Maria became the next Duke. Thus, Guidobaldo's Gongaza wife, Elisabetta, did not contribute to the lineage. However, another Gongaza, Elisabetta's niece, married Francesco Maria, making the Gonzagas ancestors of all the Montefeltro descendants.

The list of Counts and Dukes is from the Oxford Dynasties of the World, by John E. Morby [Oxford University Press, 1989, 2002, p.105]. The genealogical diagram is based on Morby, on April Blood, by Lauro Martines [Oxford, 2003, p.xv], and on the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, by Andreas Thiele, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 1997, p.249], and Volume III, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser, Ergänzungsband [Andreas Thiele, R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 2001, p.210].

The "Venus of Urbino" is a painting by the great artist Titian (1488/90-1576). This may be a portrait of a well known Venetian courtesan, Angela Zaffetta. The painting, completed in 1534, is associated with Urbino because it was bought by Duke Guidobaldo II della Rovere. When the Urbino line passed to the Medici, the painting, with many others, was moved to Florence, where it remains. It later occasioned what seems an uncharacteristic condemnation from no less than Mark Twain, who called it "the foulest, the vilest, the obscenest picture the world possesses." However, this may be stated so strongly in contrast with the puritanism enforced in life, but allowed in such art. Indeed, the sensuality of the portait was something that always had the potential to generate protest. Part of the problem seemed to have been that her left hand, although near the traditional placement to conceal her genitals, doesn't conceal much, which led many to think that it is there because she has been pleasuring herself.

Here is the wood paneled study of Federico Montefeltro, where Kenneth Clark did a stand-up, talking about the Duke's enlightened attitudes. This is on September 18, 2019, with our guide in Urbino, Christina, at left, and two of my friends, Daphne and Robert, who we traveled with, center and right. Other rooms in the palace were stone or plastered, and this room is unique, warm and cozy.

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Lords of Verona,
1226-1404 AD

da Romano, Ghibelline
Di Sehio, Ghibelline
San Bonifazio, Guelph
della Scala, Ghibelline
Mastino I1260-1277
Excommunicated for supporting Conradin Hohenstaufen, 1267
Albert I1277-1301
Bartolomeo I1301-1304
Cangrande I1308-1329
Mastino II1329-1351
holds Parma, 1335-1341
Alberto II1351-1352
Cangrande II1352-1359
Paolo Alboin1359-1375
Bartolomeo II1375-1381
Antonio I1381-1387,
To Milan, 1387-1404
Antonio II1404
To Padua, 1404;
both to Venice, 1405
In the 14th century, Verona was briefly a major power in Northern Italy. It reached its height of dominion, prestige, and culture under Cangrande I and Mastino II della Scala, but then
Florence, Venice, Milan, Modena, and Mantua all combined against her. Reduced to a local state, Verona soon fell to Milan and then finally to Venice. Even so brief an ascendency, however, has left an enduring impression of romance and culture.

How to label the rulers and the realm of Verona is a little confusing. The Northern Italian cities of the 12th century, such as the members, including Verona (1167-1226), of the Lombard League, the Lega Lombarda, were essentially republics. The podestà (like potestà, "power") was the elected mayor. Once Mastino I made his office hereditary (1263), he became the Signore, the "Lord." This made Verona a signoría, a domain or "seignitory." Nevertheless, the Lord of Verona is often called the "Prince," and Bruce R. Gordon lists the state as a "Principality." This is reasonable, since a "lord" may be no more than a baron at the bottom of a very deep feudal hierarchy, while any ruler who is essentially sovereign and autonomous may be called a "prince." In the 15th century, as the political arrangements in Italy matured, the surviving independent cities, which had not remained Republics (like Genoa), tended to become Duchies (like Milan).

Cangrande I della Scala (1308-1329) was one of the archetypes of the Renaissance Prince, sheltering Dante Alighieri in exile (as had Bartolomeo I), and patronizing Petrarch and Giotto. Dante wrote a letter to Cangrande explaining the levels of interpretation that would apply to The Divine Comedy. And Dante repaid Cangrande's attentions by placing him in The Paradiso. Modern Verona repaid Dante's attentions with a statue of him in the middle of the city. The prince also appears favorably in Boccaccio's Decameron. Notice that Dante moved on to Ravenna, where he is buried.

Since the traditional date of the story of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet is thought to be 1302, the Prince of the story would have been Bartolomeo I (1301-1304). The Prince is called "Escalus," which looks like a Latin version of "Scalla." Romeo and Juliet's families, the Montagues (Montecchi) and the Capulets, respectively, are feuding because of the conflict between Guelphs (the Papal party of the Welfs) and Ghibellines (the Imperial party of the Hohenstaufen or Waiblingen) that troubled the politics of many Italian cities -- note that Verona left the Lombard League, which resisted the Emperors, in 1226 when the Ghibellines achieved control of the city.

The Montagues were Guelphs and the Capulets Ghibellines. In the play the Prince, who was a Ghibelline, does not in general seem to favor one family over the other, which may reflect his policy of reconciling the factions to his rule. However, at the beginning of the play, where there is a street fight between the two families, with the heads of the families present, the Prince does seem to show some favoritism. He says;

You, Capulet, shall go along with me:
And, Montague, come you this afternoon,
To know our farther pleasure in this case,
To old Freetown, our common judgment place.

"Freetown" is Villafranca di Verona, where we find the ancestral castle, "Castello Scaligero," of the della Scalas, ten miles outside Verona. Since the Montagues are the Guelfs, it is noteworthy that the more burdensome and threatening instruction is given to them them. The Prince, as we might expect, seems less harsh to the Ghibelline Capulets. However, the Prince does not want civil disorder in Verona, so he tolerates no nonsense from either family.

The houses of the two families, or at least what are thought to be, are still pointed out and marked in Verona. Richard Paul Roe traveled Northern Italy and identified the Italian sites in Shakespeare's plays, as recounted in The Shalespeare Guide to Italy, Retracing the Bard's Unknown Travels [Harper Perennial, 2011]. Since William Shakspere of Stratford is not known or thought to have ever left England, it has been typical to think that many of the details of locations in the Italian plays came from his imagination, or from reports of some travelers, casually examined. There were no Michelin Guides to Italy at the time, although there were some maps.

However, many details look like one would need personal local knowledge to be aware of them. Thus, since Romeo and Juliet begins with a reference to sycamore groves outside the western walls of Verona, where earlier versions of the story, upon which the play relies, mention nothing of the sort, this looks like a case requiring real familiarity with the place. Other details about Verona are of the same kind. This is relevant to debates about the authorship of the Shakespearean plays. Edward de Vere is known to have lived and traveled in Northern Italy for more than a year.

Shakespeare set another play in Verona, the self-explanatory The Two Gentlemen of Verona. However, there is little about Verona in the play, since the "gentlemen" straightaway leave and go to Milan. The issue is how they got there. Since they are said to have gone by boat, this is often thought to have been one of Shakespeare's mistakes, since both cities are landlocked. However, Richard Paul Roe identified the canals that connected Verona, on the Adige River, with the Po River, which led by other canals, in two different ways, to Milan. The wealthy would travel by boat rather than risk robbers and other inconviences, like dirty inns, going by land. The canals to Milan led to the actual moat around the city, which had been enlarged to accomodate actual shipping. In modern times, the moat was filed in and became a ring road aroung Milan, the way the city walls of Vienna were demolished and became the ring road there.

Alexander Waugh cites another example of Shakespeare scholarship about Verona:

Let us take, for example, the seeming trifle of St. Peter’s in Verona, a church mentioned three times by Shakespeare in Romeo and Juliet. Stratfordian John Doherty ["Bookbinder at Martext, Author," Melbourne, Australia] has this to say about it:

There has never been a Saint Peter’s Church in Verona. There is a San Tomaso’s, a San Stefano’s, a Santa Anastasia’s etc... There is also a San Bernadino’s church with an attached Franciscan monastery. This would have been a suitable location for Friar Laurence’s cell... However, Saint Peter’s was as good a name for a church as any for Shakespeare [The Ignorance of Shakespeare, Eloquent Books, 2009].

The difference between this and the method used by non-Stratfordian scholars is both considerable and typical, for where the Stratfordian is content to affect the carefree pose of an armchair pundit, the non-Stratfordian rolls up his sleeves, gets himself to Verona, trawls the streets and minutely examines the local archives -- not in order to discover if there is a church in Verona called St. Peter's, but to establish which of the four churches of that name -- San Pietro in Castello, San Pietro in Archivolto, San Pietro Martine or San Pietro Incarnario -- might have been the one that Shakespeare had in mind ["Keeping Shakespeare out of Italy," Beyond Doubt? The Shakespeare Authorship Coalition, 2013, 2016, p.73 -- it turned out to be San Pietro Incarnario].

Waugh speculates that the author here "may not have known that 'Peter' translates into Italian as 'Pietro'." This seems unkind; but if not, one wonders how Mr. Doherty can have read off the names of a number of churches in Verona and not have realized that several were named after St. Peter.

Cangrande and his brother Bartolomeo married sisters whose father was Conrad of Antioch, the son of Frederick of Antioch, an illegitimate son of the Emperor Frederick II. Frederick's mother, who was the source of his connection to the Principality of Antioch, is called "Maria" or "Mathilda." I had difficulty identifying her parentage among the de Hauteville Princes of Antioch. I could not track her down in my regular sources, and I had even gotten the idea that she was the wife rather than the mother of Fredrick of Antioch. Fortunately, a correspondent, Jan van den Burg, found some references, including Detlev Schwennicke, Europäische Stammtafeln Neue Folge Band I.1, Die fränkischen Könige (...) Kaiser desen Römischen Reiches Deutscher Nation, Tafel 16 Die Staufer III. This is a curious feature of the della Scala genealogy, although the subsequent descent of the family was the result of neither marriage.

The Princes of Verona were from the della Scala family -- a name that can also be rendered as "de Scalis" or "Scaliger" (Scaligeri). There is a curious sequel involving this name. Joseph Justus Scaliger (1540-1609), who introduced the device of Julian Day Numbers, was the son of the Humanist scholar Julius Caesar Scaliger (1484-1558), after whom the Day Numbers were actually named (not directly after Julius Caesar). The elder Scaliger was born in Italy; and although he styled himself as "Giulio Cesare della Scala," his own father's name was Benedetto Bordone and he went as a Bordone in his youth. It was later that he claimed to actually be a della Scala, a Scaliger. Although this seems to make it unlikely that he was an actual Scaliger, the present fame of the name is principally due to Joseph Justus.

Thus, for its very brief period of fame, the influence of Verona survives in literature and even in the history of science.

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d'Estes of Milan, Ferrara, & Modena;
d'Este & Hapsburg Dukes of Modena,
1196-1859 AD

The d'Este family was from an old Lombard family. Otbert I achieves prominence with the coming of the Germans, King then Emperor Otto I, to Italy. Otbert becomes the Count Palatine of Italy, i.e. the keeper of the Imperial Palace, and his successors continue as Margraves of Milan and of other Northern Italian locales. There are then two significant landmarks in the history of the family. First Albert Azzo II marries Kunigunde, the Heiress of the Welfs. Their son founds the line of the "Younger Welfs" detailed elsewhere. By his second marriage, the line of d'Este continues in Milan. As Milan shifts to communal government, the d'Estes shift to other cities, like Ferrara and then Modena. It is as Dukes of Modena that they continued to the 19th century.
Azzo IPodestá
of Ferrara,
Aldobrandino I1212-1215
Azzo II1215-1264
Obizzo IILord of Ferrera
& Modena,
Azzo III1293-1308
Aldobrandino II1308-1326
Niccolò I1317-1344
Obizzo III1317-1352
Aldobrandino III1352-1361
Niccolò II1361-1388
Niccolò III1393-1441
Duke of
Modena &
Ercole I1471-1505
Alfonso I1505-1534
Ercole II1534-1559
Alfonso II1559-1597
loss of Ferrera,
Alfonso III1628-1629,
Francis I1629-1658
Alfonso IV1658-1662
Francis II1662-1694
Francis III1737-1780
Ercole III1780-1796,
Modena annexed to
Lombard Republic, 1796;
Cisalpine Republic, 1797,
Kingdom of Italy, 1805-1814

This list was originally from Brian Tompsett's Royal and Noble genealogy, which left a few obscurities. Now the list has been modified and the entire genealogy produced from Andreas Thiele's Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, Volume I, Part 1, Deutsche Kaiser-, Königs-, Herzogs- und Grafenhäuser I [Third Edition, R. G. Fischer Verlag, 1997, p.33], Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 1997, pp.231-236], and Volume III, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser, Ergänzungsband [R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 2001, pp.163-164].

Ferdinand Frederick1803-1806
Francis IV1806-1846
Francis V1846-1859,
Annexed by Sardinia
to Italy, 1859
The tenure of the d'Este family in Modena continued until the heiress, Mary Beatrice, married Ferdinand of Austria, son of the Emperor Francis I. The genealogy of the following Hapsburgs can be examined in the diagram for Tuscany.

When the Duke of Modena was deposed by Napoleon, he was compensated by the Treaty of Campo Formio (between France and Austria, 1797) with Breisgau. Francis IV would have been able to return in 1814.

In 1859 a plebiscite voted for union with Sardinia, whence it passed into the Kingdom of Italy when that was formed in 1861.

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The Doges of Genoa, 1339-1560 AD

Doges of Genoa
Corsica taken from Pisa, 1284;
Marco Polo captured, 1296;
defeat of Venice, Battle of Curzola, 1298
Simone Boccanegra1339-1344,
Caffa in Crimea taken, 1343
Giovanni I di Murta I1344-1350
Giovanni II di Valenti1350-1353
occupied by Milan, 1353-1356;
war with Venice, 1353-1355
Gabriele Adorno1363-1370
Domenico di Campofregoso1370-1378
Antoniotto I Adorno1378, 1383, 1385-1390, 1391-1392, 1394-1396
Nicholò Guasco1378-1383
war with Venice, 1378-1381
Frederico de Pagana1383
Leonardo Montaldo1383-1385
Geiacomo Fregoso1390-1391
Antoniotto II Montaldo1392-1393, 1393-1394
Pietro Fregoso1393
Clemente Promonorio1393
Francesco Giustiniano di Garibaldo1393
Nicholò Zoagli1394
occupied by France, 1396-1409;
occupied by Montferrat, 1409-1413
Giorgio Adorno1413-1415
Barnaba Guano1415
Thomas di Campofregoso1415-1421, 1436-1442
occupied by Milan, 1421-1436
Isnardo Guarco1436
Raffaele Adorno1443-1447
Barnaba Adorno1447
Giao I di Campofregoso1447-1448
Lodovico I di Campofregoso1448-1450, 1461-1462, 1462
Pietro di Campofregoso1450-1458
occupied by France, 1458-1461
Prospero Adorno1461, 1477
Spinetta Fregoso1461
Paolo Fregoso1462, 1462-1463, 1483-1488
occupied by Milan, 1463-1477
Battista Fregoso1478-1483
occupied by Milan, 1488-1499;
occupied by France, 1499-1507
Paolo da Novi1507
occupied by France, 1507-1511
Giano II di Campofregoso1512-1513
Ottaviano Tregoso1513-1515
occupied by France, 1515-1522
Antoniotto II Adorno1522-1527
occupied by France, 1527-1528
Andrew Adorno,
Andrea Doria
Censor, 1527-1555, d.1560
Republic, 1560-1798
Oberto Cattaneo Lazzari1528-1531
Battista Spinola1531-1533
Battista Lomellini1533-1535
Cristoforo Grimaldi Rosso1535-1537
Giovanni Battista Doria1537-1539
Gianandrea Giustiniani Lungo1539-1541
Leonardo Cattaneo della Volta1541-1543
Andrea Centurione Pietrasanta1543-1545
Giovanni Battista di Fornari1545-1547
Benedetto Gentile Pevere1547-1549
Gaspare Grimaldi Bracelli1549-1551
Luca Spinola1551-1553
Giacomo Promontorio1553-1555
Agostino Pinello Ardimenti1555-1557
Pietro Giovanni Chiavica Cibo1557-1558
Girolamo Vivaldi1559-1561
Paolo Battista Giudice Calvi1561
Giovanni Battista Cicala Zoagli1561-1563
Giovanni Battista Lercari1563-1565
Ottavio Gentile Oderico1565-1567
Simone Spinola1567-1569
Paolo Giustiniani Moneglia1569-1571
Gianotto Lomellini1571-1573
Giacomo Grimaldi Durazzo1573-1575
Prospero Centurione Fattinanti1575-1577
Giovanni Battista Gentile Pignolo1577-1579
Nicoló Doria1579-1581
Gerolamo de Franchi Tosso1581-1583
Gerolamo Chiavari1583-1585
Ambrogio di Negro1585-1587
Davide Vacca1587-1589
Battista Negrone1589-1591
Giovanni Agostino Giustiniani Campi1591-1593
Antonio Grimaldi Cebá1593-1595
Matteo Senarega1595-1597
Lazzaro Grimaldi Cebá1597-1599
Lorenzo Sauli1599-1601
Agostino Doria1601-1603
Pietro de Franchi Sacco1603-1605
Luca Grimaldi de Castro1605-1607
Silvestro Invrea1607
Gerolamo Assereto1607-1609
Agostino Pinelli Luciani1609-1611
Alessandro Giustiniani Longo1611-1613
Tomaso Spinola1613-1615
Bernardo Clavarezza1615-1617
Giovanni Giacomo Imperiale Tartaro1617-1619
Pietro Durazzo1619-1621
Ambrogio Doria1621
Giorgio Centurione1621-1623
Federico de Franchi Toso1623-1625
Giacomo Lomellini1625-1627
Giovanni Luca Chiavari1627-1629
Andrea Spinola1629-1631
Leonardo della Torre1631-1633
Giovanni Stefano Doria1633-1635
Giovanni Francesco I Brignole Sale1635-1637
Agostino Pallavicini1637-1639
Giovanni Battista Durazzo1639-1641
Giovanni Agostino de Marini1641-1642
Giovanni Battista Lercari1642-1644
Luca Giustiniani1644-1646
Giovanni Battista Lomellini1646-1648
Giacomo de Franchi Toso1648-1650
Agostino Centurione1650-1652
Gerolamo de Franchi Toso1652-1654
Alessandro Spinola1654-1656
Giulio Sauli1656-1658
Giovanni Battista Centurione1658-1660
Gian Bernardo Frugoni1660-1661
Antoniotto Invrea1661-1663
Stefano de Mari1663-1665
Cesare Durazzo1665-1667
Cesare Gentile1667-1669
Francesco Garbarino1669-1671
Alessandro Grimaldi1671-1673
Agostino Saluzzo1673-1675
Antonio da Passano1675-1677
Giannettino Odone1677-1679
Agostino Spinola1679-1681
Luca Maria Invrea1681-1683
Francesco Maria Imperiale Lercari1683-1685
Pietro Durazzo1685-1687
Luca Spinola1687-1689
Oberto della Torre1689-1691
Giovanni Battista Cattaneo della Volta1691-1693
Francesco Invrea1693-1695
Bendinelli Negrone1695-1697
Francesco Maria Sauli1697-1699
Girolamo de Mari1699-1701
Federico de Franchi Toso1701-1703
Antonio Grimaldi Cebá1703-1705
Stefano Onorato Ferreti1705-1707
Domenico Maria de Mari1707-1709
Vincenzo Durazzo1709-1711
Francesco Maria Imperiale1711-1713
Giovanni Antonio Giustiniani1713-1715
Lorenzo Centurione1715-1717
Benedetto Viale1717-1719
Ambrogio Imperiale1719-1721
Cesare de Franchi Toso1721-1723
Domenico Negrone1723-1725
Gerolamo Veneroso1726-1728
Luca Grimaldi1728-1730
Francesco Maria Balbi1730-1732
Domenico Maria Spinola1732-1734
Stefano Durazzo1734-1736
Nicoló Cattaneo della Volta1736-1738
Costantino Balbi1738-1740
Nicoló Spinola1740-1742
Domenico Canevaro1742-1744
Lorenzo de Mari1744-1746
Gian Franceso II Brignone Sale1746-1748
Cesare Cattaneo della Volta1748-1750
Agostino Viale1750-1752
Stefano Lomellini1752-1752
Giovanni Battista Grimaldi1752-1754
Gian Giacomo Veneroso1754-1756
Giovanni Giacomo Grimaldi1756-1758
Matteo Franzoni1758-1760
Agostino Lomellini1760-1762
Rodolfo Giulio Brignone Sale1762-1764
Francesco Maria della Rovere1765-1767
Marcello Durazzo1767-1769
Corsica sold to France, 1768
Giovanni Battista Negrone1769-1771
Giovanni Battista Cambiaso1771-1773
Ferdinando Spinola1773-1773
Pier Franco Grimaldi1773-1775
Brizio Giustiniani1775-1777
Giuseppe Lomellini1777-1779
Giacomo Maria Brignole1779-1781
Marco Antonio Gentile1781-1783
Giovanni Battista Ayroli1783-1785
Gian Carlo Pallavicino1785-1787
Raffaele de Ferrari1787-1789
Alerame Maria Pallavicini1789-1791
Michelangelo Cambiaso1791-1793
Giuseppe Maria Doria1793-1795
Giacomo Maria Brignole1795-1797
occupied by FranceLigurian
annexed to Sardinia, 1814
Although eventually Genoa could be compared to its great rival,
Venice, when the city fell to the Lombards in 642, it began one of the phases of its history that would always distinguish it from Venice, namely, that it was much more vulnerable to landward enemies and could easily be occupied by invaders. It especially found itself often at the mercy of Milan or France.

The first cities responsible for maritime commercial culture on the West side of Italy were the Duchies of Naples, Gaeta, and Amalfi, which drifted into autonomy and independence after the Roman reconquest of Italy in the 6th century. Amalfi emerged as the most successful seapower of the Duchies. But then as Amalfi began to be overshadowed by the new Norman states in the 11th century, it was Pisa that emerged as its most powerful rival.

Pisa, however, as with Genoa later, had difficulty achieving and maintaining its independence. At first it was a possession of the Duchy of Lucca. In the 9th & 10th centuries, fleets from the city were already involved in naval actions from Italy to North Africa. In 1003 a communal government revolted against Lucca. By 1052, Pisa had occupied Corscia, to the distress of Genoa, and in 1060 defeated Genoa in a naval battle. In 1077 Pope Gregory VII recognized Pisan independence; and in 1092 Pope Urban II recognized Pisan rule over Sardinia and Corsica. A communal government survived from 1081 to 1312 (encompassing episodes like Schopenhauer's "dungeon of Ugolino" in 1289). Thereafter Pisa's independence began to be interrupted, and finally Florence took over 1406-1494 and permanently after 1509.

By the end of the 13th century, however, Genoa had surpassed Pisa, taking Corsica from it as Aragon took Sardinia (1323), and challenging Venice in both war and trade -- and sharing with England the symbol of the red on white Cross of St. George. The city completely replaced Venice as the most favored nation in Constantinople under the Palaeologi, receiving the city of Galata, across the Golden Horn from the capital, as a Genovese colony.

Although officially neutral during the Turkish siege of Constantinople in 1453, and contributing only a single ship to the defense of the city, a Genovese captain, Giovanni Giustiniani Longo (1418-1453), did lead an unofficial contingent of defenders, which he raised and paid for himself, from Genoa. Giustiniani was perhaps militarily the most effective leader of the defense. On May 29th, when he was wounded and left the walls, one is then not surprised to learn that the city fell on that day. As the last Emperor's name, Constantine XI, recalls the founder of the city, Giustiniani's name echoes the Emperor, Justinian, who recovered Genoa itself from the Ostrogoths. Giustiniani was evacuated to Chios, a possession of Genoa at the time, where he died on his wound on June 1st.

In 1298 the Genovese defeated a Venetian fleet and captured 5,000 prisoners, including Marco Polo, who began to recount his travels to China while sitting in a Genovese prison. Polo is also said to have been captured two years earlier in a separate action.

As modern history began, the significance of Genoa, as of Venice, declined, but Genoa suffered repeated occupations, while Venice did not, as the armies of France moved in and out of Italy. Later, it may not have been considered significant enough to occupy, until the French Revolution ushered in an era in which small mediaeval remnants got scooped up by larger states. Or the city may have been sufficiently strengthened by the reforms of Andrea Doria, who converted the Dogeship into a biannual office. Among subsequent Doges we see many familiar names, like Doria itself, Grimaldi, the name of the present Princes of Monaco, and even Giustiniani.

Genoa had a way of dealing with its occupation by the Great Powers, so as to preserve what really counted, wealth and business. Andrew Lambert says:

When the national Bank of San Giorgio ceased trading in 1444, it continued to manage the city's debts, collect taxes, pay dividends to investors, and administer subject citities and colonies. The state was run by the shareholders of a bank. The Genoese carefully hid this fact from foreign rulers, to whom they frequently ceded control, using the bank to ensure real power remained with the oligarchy. Genoa was almost an anti-state, relying on private wealth, private naval forces and mercenary troops. [Seapower States, Maritime Culture, Continental Empires and the Conflict that Made the Modern World, Yale University Press, 2018, p.212]

This extraordinary subterfuge served to preserve "continuity of government" even as the passing armies of Milan, France, and others would occasionally occupy the city. It all remained just business as usual. We also see in this that, like many north Italian cities, Genoa was, of course, a center of banking. For many years, in the heyday of Spanish power, it was one of the principal sources of loans to the Kings of Spain, who borrowed against future revenues from the New World -- so much so that the revenues were not enough and many defaults occurred. Since one of the defaults (1576) left the Spanish Army in the Netherlands unpaid, it mutinied, allowing the Dutch to regroup their defenses and achieve independence.

Pisa, meanwhile, was annexed by Florence in 1406, was briefly freed (by the French, 1494), and then was permanently incorporated into Florence in 1509. Venice, of course, survived until occupied by Napoleon in 1797. Corsica, always difficult to control, was sold to France in 1768. Still a troublesome possession, it contributed, of course, Napoleone Buonaparte (or Napoleon Bonaparte) to be the first Emperor of France.

The most famous resident of Genoa was probably Christopher Columbus (Cristoforo Columbo), celebrated by Italians, sometimes with opposition, on Columbus Day every year. Columbus, however, may originally have been of Spanish (Cristóbal Colón), or even Jewish, derivation. The latest theories are that he was actually Catalan and deliberately tried to obscure his origins because of a brief stint at piracy. Since he married Spanish nobility, chances are that he was not of an origin that would have been prevented such a marriage, i.e. Jewish or a Genovese commoner.

This list was originally from Bruce R. Gordon's Regnal Chronologies. It had English equivalents for Italian, where the Italian names are often more familiar. I had seen the name "Tregoso" given as "Fregoso." Now I have updated the list from the data at Wikipedia, replacing all the Anglicized names that Gordan had before 1527, including "Fregoso" for "Tregoso." Also, there have been minor corrections in dates. The changes are almost entirely before 1527.

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Bishops and Archbishops
of Milan

Bishops of Milan
St. Barnabasc.52 AD
St. Anathalonc.53
St. Caius61-85
St. Castricianus97-138
St. Calimerus138-191
St. Mona195-251
St. Maternusc.282
St. Miroclusc.303
St. Eustorgioc.315
St. Protasius Algisic.351
St. Dionysius Mariani351-365
St. Ambrosius/Ambrose374-397
Council II, Constantinople I, Arianism condemned, 381; orders public penance of Emperor Theodosius I for massacre at Thessalonica, 390
St. Simplicianus Soresini397-400
St. Venerius Oldrati400-408
St. Marolo408-423
St. Martinianus Osio423-435
St. Glycerius Landriani436-438
St. Lazarus Beccardi438-449
St. Eusebius Pagani449-462
St. Gerontius Bescapè462-465
St. Benignus Bossi465-472
St. Senator Settala472-475
St. Theodorus I de' Medici475-490
St. Laurentius I Litta490-512
St. Eustorgio II512-518
St. Magnus de' Trincheri518-530
St. Dacius Agliati530-552
Vitale de' Cittadini552-555
Frontoneschismatic, 556-566
St. Ausanus Crivelli566-567
St. Honoratus Castiglioni568-572
Lombards conquer northern Italy, 568
Laurentius II573-592
Constantius de' Cittadini593-600
St. Giovan I Bono649-660
St. Antonino Fontana660-661
St. Maurisilio661-662
St. Ampelio667-672
St. Mansueto Savelli672-681
St. Benedetto I Crespi681-725
Theodorus II725-739
St. Natale740-741
Leto Marcellino745-759
Tommaso Grassi759-783
Pietro I Oldrati784-801
St. Anselmo I Biglia813-818
St. Buono Castiglioni818-822
Angilberto I822-823
Angilberto II Pusterla824-859
Ansperto Confalonieri da Biassono868-881
Anselmo II Capra882-896
Landolfo I Grassi896-899
Andrea da Carcano899-906
Aicone Oldrati906-918
Gariberto di Besana918-921
Arderico Cotta936-948
Valperto de' Medici953-970
Arnolfo I970-974
Landolfo II da Carcano980-998
Arnolfo II da Arsago998-1018
Ariberto da Intimiano1018-1045
St. Guido da Velate1045-1069, d.1071
Gotifredo da Castiglioneanti-bishop,
Tebaldo da Castiglione1075-1080
Anselmo III da Rho1086-1093
Arnolfo III1093-1097
Anselmo IV da Bovisio1097-1101
Giordano da Clivio1112-1120
Anselmo V Pusterla1126-1133
St. Bernardo1135
Umberto I da Pirovano1146-1166
St. Galdino della Sala1166-1176
Algisio da Pirovano1176-1182
Umberto II Crivelli1182-1185
Pope Urban III,
Milone da Cardano1185-1195
Umberto III da Terzago1195-1196
Filippo I da Lampugnano1196-1206
Umberto IV da Pirovano1206-1211
Gerardo da Sessa1211-1212
Enrico I da Settala1213-1230
Guglielmo I da Rizolio1230-1241
Leon da Perego1241-1257
Ottone Visconti1262-1295
Ruffino da Frisseto1295-1296
Francesco I da Parma1296-1308
Cassone Torriani1308-1317
Aicardo da Intimiano1317-1339
Giovanni II Visconti1342-1354
Roberto Visconti1354-1361
Guglielmo II Pusterla1361-1370
Simon da Borsano1370-1380
Antonio de' Saluzzi1380-1401
Petros II Philargos1402-1410
Antipope at Pisa, Alexander V,
Francesco II Crippa1409-1414
Bartolommeo Capra1414-1433
Francesco III Piccolpasso1433-1443
Enrico II Rampini1443-1450
Giovanni III Visconti1450-1453
Nicolò Amidano1453-1454
Timoteo Maffei1454
Gabriele Sforza1454-1457
Carlo I da Forlì1457-1461
Stefano Nardini1461-1484
Giovan IV Arcimboldi1484-1488
Guido Antonio Arcimboldi1488-1497
Ottaviano Arcimboldi1497
Ippolito I d'Este1497-1520
Ippolito II d'Este1520-1550
Giovan Angelo Arcimboldi1550-1555
Filippo II Archinti1556-1558
St. Carlo Borromeo1560-1584
Gaspare Visconti1584-1595
Federico I Borromeo1595-1631
Cesare Monti1632-1650
Alfonso Litta1652-1679
Federico II Visconti1681-1693
Federico III Caccia1693-1699
Giuseppe I Archinti1699-1712
Benedetto II Erba Odescalchi1712-1737
Carlo Gaetano I Stampa1737-1742
Giuseppe II Pozzobonello1743-1783
Filippo Maria Visconti1784-1801
Giovan Battista Caprara1802-1810
Carlo Gaetano II Graf von Gaisruck1816-1846
Bartolomeo Carlo Romilli1847-1859
Paolo Angelo Ballerini1859-1867
Luigi Nazari di Calabiana1867-1893
Andrea Carlo Ferrari1894-1921
Achille Ratti1921-1922
Pope Pius XI,
Eugenio Tosi1922-1929
Ildefonso Schuster1929-1954
Giovanni Battista Montini1954-1963
Pope Paul VI,
Giovanni Colombo1963-1979
Carlo Maria Martini1979-2002
Dionigi Tettamanzi2002-2011
Angelo Scola2011-2017
Mario Delpini2017-present

The Bishops and Archbishops of Milan, Latin Mediolanum, the "Middle of the Plain," give us a bridge all the way from Late Antiquity to the present. It is usually overlooked now, but Milan was the late Roman Capital of the Western Empire from 286 to 402, when the Emperors moved to Ravenna. As such it was the principal city in both Italy and the West.

For a while this gave the Bishops of Milan a status all but equal to that of the Popes, a circumstance conspicuous in the career of St. Ambrose, who was elected Bishop before he had even been baptised. Ambrose himself would baptize St. Augustine in 387. He bullied Emperors like Gratian to remove pagan symbols, like the Altar of Victory in the Roman Senate (382), deposed Arian bishops, and finally, in a confrontation like that of the Emperor Henry IV with Pope Gregory VII at Canossa, made Theodosius I do public penance for ordering a (retaliatory) massacre at Thessalonica.

The Germanic invasions eroded the position of Milan; and the Lombards chose nearby Pavia as their capital. All the cities of northern Italy languished until the Crusades. Then, with the revival of trade, they all grew rapidly in size, wealth, and power. The Lombard League became strong enough to defeat the Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa at Legnano in 1176.

By the 13th century, Milan and Venice were the largest cities in Western Europe. Under the Visconti (1312-1447), Milan would emerge as a Power in its own right, once again dominating the Plain as the Roman city had. Milan was also especially fortunate in being bypassed by the Black Death (c.1334-1351).

Although the Archbishops did not gain the temporal power of other ecclesiastical princes, three Popes and one major Anti-Pope would eventually emerge from their ranks, most recently Pope Paul VI. Milan remains the most important city in Northern Italy, and the center, with Paris and London, of the European fashion industry.

There are no less than seven Visconti Archbishops of Milan. Only two of them may be found in the Visconti genealogy below. The others, beginning with Roberto, are from collateral lines. Indeed, four of the seven, beginning with Giovanni III in 1450, do not serve until after the main line of the Visconti died out in 1447. We also see two Borromeo Archbishops, the family whose crest, the Borromean Rings, is the icon for The Proceedings of the Friesian School.

Another noteworthy name among the bishops of Milan is Castiglioni, the name of two -- St. Honoratus (568-572) and St. Buono (818-822). Later we get the name as Castiglione, born by two bishops, Gotifredo (anti-bishop, 1070-1075) and Tebaldo (1075-1080). The Oxford Dictionary of Surnames lists the names under "Castille":  "French: regional name for someone from Castille, the Fr. name of Sp. Castilla" [Oxford, 1988, p.98]. However, it is unlikely to impossible (Castille didn't exist yet in the 6th century) that Italian archbishops would be named after Castille, let alone in some French version of the name. Clearly, however, all such names are derived from Latin castrum or castellum, "fortress, castle."

The tradition in the families of the Castiglioni and Castiglione is that the names came from Castrum Stiliconis, the "Camp of Stilicho," the German general who in 395 was left by the Emperor Theodosius I as the Magister Militum, the "Master of Soldiers," of the Roman Army. There is no doubt that Stilicho's camp would have been in Northern Italy, near Milan and Ravenna. There are several towns in Italy named "Castiglion" or "Castiglione," including a Castigilione near Mantua where Napoleon defeated the Austrians in 1796.

Portrait of Baldassare Castiglione, 1514–1515, Raphael (1483-1520), Louvre Museum
Born nearby was Baldassare Castiglione (1478-1529), the author of The Book of the Courtier (Il Cortegiano, 1528), said to be one of the three books that the Emperor Charles V kept by his bedside. The courtly life described by Castiglione was largely derived from his experience serving the Dukes of Urbino, at first Guidubaldo I (1482-1508) and then Francesco Maria I (1508-1538).

It is noteworthy that Castiglione studied Greek at Milan with Demetrios Chalcondylas, an Athenian who fled to the West in 1447 -- one among many Greeks who characterized, or in part initiated, the Italian Renaissance. The Book of the Courier was first printed by the Aldine Press in Venice, which specialized in printing Greek books.

There is a history of Il Cortegiano in England. The book was translated into English by Sir Thomas Hoby in 1561. In 1572 there was another translation, into Latin, by Bartholomew Clerke. This was sponsored by Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford, who also wrote a Latin foreword for it. This pulls Castiglione into the question of the authorship of the plays of Shakespeare, since de Vere is a candidate as the real author, Il Cortegiano is a manifest source for the plays, and contemporary references to de Vere's foreword enter into evidence about authorship.

This list is entirely from Bruce R. Gordon's Regnal Chronologies.

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Dukes of Milan,
Visconti & Sforzas, 1312-1535 AD

Matteo I Visconti1312-1322
Galeazzo I1322-1327,
Republic, 1327-1329
Matteo II1354-1355
Galeazzo II1354-1378
Gian Galeazzo1378-1395,
Duke of Milan,
Giovanni Maria1402-1412
Filippo Maria1412-1447
Republic, 1447-1450
The description of the rise of tyrants by
Plato applies perfectly to the fate of many Italian cities in the later Middle Ages. Milan, the most important city of the region, and even of the Western Empire, in Late Roman times (Mediolanum -- the "Middle of the Plain"), was briefly rivaled by the Lombard capital, Pavia, but then grew strongest again, as it has remained into modern Italy. The Visconti, of Ghibelline (i.e. Imperial) sympathies, at first merely became "captains of the people," but then Matteo I strengthened this with the office of Imperial Vicar in 1294. Briefly ousted by the della Torre family (1302-1310), Matteo returned for good in 1311.

By the time three grandsons of Matteo came to power, Matteo II, Bernabò, and Galeazzo II, Milan dominated the region and the brothers ruled, respectively:  Piacenza, Parma, Bologna, Lodi, and Bobbio; Cremona, Crema, Brescia, and Bergamo; and Como, Novara, Vercelli, Asti, Tortona, and Alessandria. Matteo was done away with by his brothers, and then Bernabò met a similar fate after his nephew Gian Galeazzo came to power. Gian Galeazzo obtained (i.e. bought) the title of Duke from the Emperor (1395) and began acting like nobility, contracting marriages for himself and his family with the Royal houses of Europe. This led to more trouble than he could have imagined.

When the male line of Visconti came to an end, the Milanese briefly tried to do without their Duke, but then the husband of Filippo Maria's illegitimate daughter Bianca, Francesco Sforza, seized power.

Francesco I Sforza1450-1466
Galeazzo Maria1466-1476
Gian Galeazzo1476-1479,
Ludovico Maria1479-1500,
French Occupation, 1499-1512,
1515-1522, & 1524-1525
& 1525-1526,
Spanish Occupation, 1526-1529
Francesco II Maria1529-1535
Spanish Rule, 1535
What the Sforzas had to deal with nearly their entire tenure in Milan was the fact that their hereditary claim to Milan was less good than the French house of Orlèans, which was descended from a daughter, Valentina, of Gian Galeazzo. When Charles VIII of France invaded Italy in 1494, he was only interested in his own claim to Naples; but when Louis XII of Orlèans came to the throne, his claim was now to Milan as well as Naples.

When Louis invaded Italy in 1499, Milan was not strong enough, and, frankly, the Sforza's were not popular enough, to offer effective resistance. Duke Ludovico died in French custody. With Spanish help, the French were eventually ejected and the Sforzas restored, but then the new French King, Francis I, decided to try his luck. Twice he recovered Milan (1515 & 1524) but then was decisively defeated and even captured by the Spanish at the Battle of Pavia (1525).

After getting back to France, Francis put together the League of Cognac with the Pope, the Sforzas (strangely enough), Venice, and Florence. But the Spain of Charles V was not now to be resisted, and the League only accomplished the loss of Milan (1526) and the memorable sack of Rome by the Spanish army (1527).

The French gave up on Italy, and Charles installed the last Sforza, Francesco II, in Milan (1529). When Francesco died in 1535, Charles, who himself was a descendant of the Visconti (through Virida, daughter of Bernabò), claimed Milan for Spain. Francis tried to dispute this, but he only ended up occupying part of the Piedmont. Milan's days as an independent player were over. Passed to Austria after the War of the Spanish Succession, Milan remained Austrian, except for French occupation again during the Revolutionary era, until 1859, when Sardinia and Napoleon III threw the Austrians out. Milan then became part of the new Italy.

The genealogy shows two collateral lines of Visconti beginning with an uncle and a brother of Matteo I. I would really like to know the future of those lines, and of any others, because of the existence of a Prospero Visconti (1543/4-1592) in the 16th century. He may be the inspiration for the deposed Duke of Milan Prospero in the play The Tempest by William Shakespeare. And, in particular, Prospero Visconti is only likely to have been known to William Shakespeare if the Shakespeare plays were actually written by the Edward de Vere, the Earl of Oxford, who lived and traveled in the North of Italy for a year in 1575-1576, well within Prospero's lifetime. I have not yet been able to find any information about this Prospero's ancestry.

In formulating the genealogy of the Visconti, initially before sources were available on the Internet, a major obscurity I encountered concerned the marriages of Gian Galeazzo. An Encyclopedia of World History; Ancient, Medieval, and Modern, Chronologically Arranged, compiled and edited by William L. Langer [Houghton, Mifflin, Company; the Riverside Press, Boston, 1940, 1948, 1952, 1960] on its own diagram (p.297) showed him married to his cousin Catharine, who is the mother of the children shown. However, in the text (p.298), the same book said that he married Isabella, daughter of King John II of France, which was confirmed by their diagram for the Valois (p.275).

Once there were Internet sources, I found that Brian Tompsett's Royal and Noble genealogy had Isabella marrying an otherwise unidentified "John Galeas," with them as the parents of Valentina. It looked like I was going to need a much more detailed history of the Visconti to clear this up, though I did find this "John Galeas" person improbable -- it must be just an Anglicized and/or garbled rendering of Gian (pronounced in Italian like "John") Galeazzo (with "s" replacing "zzo").

I then found a more detailed treatment in the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [Andreas Thiele, R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 1997, pp. 237-241], where Gian Galeazzo's marriages and children are as shown. For a long time, I felt that Thiele was likely to be as exhaustive and accurate as anything I might find on the Internet. However, I became disillusioned when I began looking for the antecedents of Giovanni Sforza, the second husband of Lucretia Borgia. Neither Thiele nor Thompsett were helpful in that respect. The answers seemed to be on Wikipedia, including the Italian language Wikipedia. This what I now show.

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The Medici, and the Hapsburgs
of Tuscany, 1434-1860 AD

Florence under the Medici
Cosimo the Elder, Pater Patriae1434-1464
Piero I the Gouty1464-1469
Lorenzo I the Magnificent1469-1492
the Pazzi War, 1478-1480
Piero II the Unfortunate1492-1494,
Invasion of Charles VIII,
Medici expelled, 1494-1512; Savonarola's "Bonfire of the Vanties," 1497; Savonarola executed, 1498
Lorenzo II1512-1519
Giulio, Clement VII1519-1527
1523- 1534
Sack of Rome, 1527
Medici expelled, 1527-1530
Cosimo I1537-1569;
Grand Duke
of Tuscany,
Francesco I1574-1587
Ferdinand I1587-1609
Cosimo II1609-1621
Ferdinand II1621-1670
Cosimo III1670-1723
Gian Gastone1723-1737
End of the Medici
Leaders and then rulers of probably the most illustrious city of the
Renaissance, Florence, the Medici family rose from the ranks of merchants and bankers. Eventually, they contributed three Popes, two Queens of France, and the line of Grand Dukes of Tuscany until 1737, all the while as classic patrons of art, architecture, literature, and philosophy.

When the family first came to power in Florence, it was not through any formal office, position, or status. These rotated rapidly in the Republic. But the Medici gained in wealth and prestige and began to organize a political machine that gradually took over the electoral apparatus. The tenure of Lorenzo was so brilliant that he came to be called il Magnifico, "the Magnificent," an epithet shared by few other leaders in history. This gradual takeover was not without opposition. Many distinguished citizens were exiled and families attacked with punitive taxation just for opposing the Medici. Lorenzo's "Magnificence" may have been matched by his (Machiavellian) ruthlessness.

The Pazzi Chapel, Basilica of Santa Croce, Florence, 2019
With Lorenzo rising in power, one ferocious attempt was made to remove him. On 26 April 1478, some members of the Pazzi family together with relatives of Pope Sixtus IV (Francesco della Rovere), tried to assassinate Lorenzo and his brother Giuliano.

The Pazzi were a venerable family. They became important at Florence through banking, like the Medici themselves; and their chapel at Santa Croce is regarded as one of the minor jewels of Renaissance architecture. The name came from an ancestor in the First Crusade, whose courage as one of the first to climb over the walls of Jerusalem earned him the sobriquet Pazzo, "Madman."

Now the "Madmen" launched another dangerous attack. They succeeded in killing Giuliano, but then Giuliano was not really running things. The attempt on Lorenzo was botched. The professional soldier hired to do it, Giovan Battista, Count of Montesecco, refused to participate when last minute changes called for the assault to take place in the cathedral.

Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore, the Duomo (i.e. Domus), Florence, 2019
Two willing priests were found, but we might imagine they would be less accomplished in violence than the soldier, and they were. Lorenzo was only wounded.

Revenge was swift and bloody. The Medici treated the attacks as treason, even though neither Lorenzo nor his brother held any public office. The Pazzi men were killed, imprisoned, or exiled, and all the property of the family confiscated. Even distant relatives were prohibited from any longer using their name or the family crest.

The result, however, was a war with the Pope and King Ferrante of Naples -- the Pazzi War, 1478-1480. Lorenzo was excommunicated, Florence placed under an interdict, and southern Tuscany invaded. For a while things looked bad, and murmurings again rose against the Medici, but eventually a compromise was reached, and Lorenzo emerged with solidified power. Some conspirators, like Count Girolamo Riario (d.1488), an in-law of Sixtus IV, were still being assassinated years later. Medici banking and other interests, however, had suffered, and this, together with Lorenzo's patronage of the arts, began to cost the family its fortune, with an undetermined bit of public money thrown in as well. All was well until his death, and then his less able son Piero had to reap the consequences.

It was the invasion of Italy by the French King Charles VIII in 1494 that disrupted the rule of the Medici. The Florentines expelled them for siding with the French. The Pazzi were exonerated, rehabilitated, and the exiles returned. They never returned to their former prominence, however, and later historians, dazzled by the culture surrounding the Medici, tended to repeat Medici propaganda about them. It even looks like the modern American gangster term "patsy," for a dupe, is from the name of the Pazzi.

This continues, in an interesting fashion, in Hannibal by Thomas Harris [1999], where the eponymous anti-hero murders a modern day Pazzi policeman the same way Francesco Pazzi was hung from a window of the Palazzo Vecchio -- most graphically shown in the 2001 movie. A more balanced treatment of the Pazzi may be found in April Blood, by Lauro Martines [Oxford, 2003] -- the source of the Pazzi genealogy given here.

During the last republican period in Florence, we get the notable but brief ascendency of the monk Savonarola, whose puritanical reign of terror was for a time popular and appalling. Most memorable was the "Bonfire of the Vanities," where Savonarola publicly burned art and other frivolities, either seized or brought by enthusiasts. Important works of art may thus have been lost.

But this sort of thing, although lingering in memory (cf. The Bonfire of the Vanities, by Tom Wolfe, 2008), wore out its welcome with the Florentines. After the execution of Savonarola in 1498, we find Niccolò Machiavelli beginning his own political career, becoming a secretary and diplomat for the Republic. He continues when Pier Soderini becomes Gonfalonier for life in 1502. As his diplomatic activities continue, in 1506 Machiavelli also begins to organize a Militia of the citizens, the kind of thing we know he believed in. In 1508 he is even put in charge of the operation to regain Pisa, which had seceded in 1494. This was successful in 1509.

In 1512 Spanish troops enter Tuscany and we get the fall of both Sonderini and Machiavelli. In 1513, Machiavelli retires to San Casciano and begins up write up his political ideas. Popes Leo X and Clement VII, i.e. the Medici Popes, nevertheless both consult with Machiavelli, who died in 1527, just as the Medici are about to be expelled, briefly, again.

The family returned to Florence thanks to the power within the Church of Lorenzo's son Giovanni, a Cardinal at 13 and elected Pope Leo X in 1513. Leo is supposed to have said, "God has given us the Papacy, so we may as well enjoy it." Leo's tenure, of course, was marked by the beginning of the Reformation. He is reputed to have at first dismissed Martin Luther as "some drunken German." Leo appointed his nephew Lorenzo to rule Florence,
Battistero di San Giovanni, Piazza del Duomo, Florence, 2019
and then next his (illegitimate) cousin Giulio.

On Leo's death, Giulio became the head of the family and in short order was elected Pope as Clement VII. He had difficulty choosing the right side in the wars between France and the Emperor Charles V. The traditional anti-Imperial policy of the Papacy would indicate alliance with France. Unfortunately, Charles V was far more powerful than any Emperor had been in centuries. Clement allying himself with France thus brought a Spanish army into Italy. It sacked Rome and captured the Pope in 1527. The Medici were also, again, expelled from Florence.

They say that if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. The Mediaeval Emperors would have installed their own Pope, but Clement and Charles made up instead. In 1530, the Emperor installed Clement's illegitimate son, Alessandro, as Duke of Florence (he was, after all, the de jure lord of Lombardy and Northern Italy), and the Pope formally crowned Charles Emperor, the last time this was to happen, in Bologna -- a little too soon to use Rome after the sack of 1527. Thus the Medici achieved the princely rule so long feared by their enemies. The Republic of Florence was dead. The alarm of the Pazzi was proven fully justified; and their sacrifice, after various ups and downs of fortune, turned out to be in vain. The Medici came to be remembered for their culture, not for their lust for power, legitimated by success.

Francesco II
III, Duke of
I, Emperor,
Leopold I1745-1790
II, Emperor,
Ferdinand III1790-1801,
Elector of
Elector of
Grand Duke
of Würzburg,
Louis of ParmaKing of Etruria,
Charles Louis
of Parma
Maria Louisa
of Parma
Annexed to France, 1807-1814
Leopold II1824-1859,
Ferdinand IV1859-1860,
Annexed by Sardinia
to Italy, 1860
Alessandro was assassinated, by one of his own cousins, and Charles then installed another cousin, Cosimo, as Duke. Cosimo was actually the grandson of Catherine Sforza, whose first husband had been, of all people, Count Girolamo Riario. The Duchy of Florence was upgraded to the Grand Duchy of Tuscany in 1569, and Cosimo's line continued until 1737, when the family in the male line simply died out.

Although only two lines of descent are shown in the genealogical diagram, it must be remembered that there were other branches of the family. A popup diagram may be examined that shows the descent of the family of Giovani di Bicci from the earliest Medici ancestors, together with the branch of the family that led to another Medici Pope, Leo XI -- though he reigned less than a year (1605). This extended Medici genealogy is derived from the "Genealogie delle Dinastie Italiane" website.

A tendency of the family to ally with France is evident in the marriages. Lorenzo the Magnificent's great grand-daughter Catherine married King Henry II of France. Three of her sons became Kings of France, and then her daughter Margaret married the next King, Henry of Navarre. Margaret had no children and eventually consented to an annulment. Henry, however, then married another Medici, Maria (Marie, in French), a daughter of Grand Duke Francesco I. Marie then became the mother of the future King Louis XIII. When Henry was assassinated in 1610, and Louis still a child, Marie actually ruled France as Regent. Rubens painted a series of 25 pictures to illustrate the life of the Queen. Although the Medici ruled Florence for another century, this was their last great moment on the stage of European history.

When the Medici Dukes died out in 1737, the Duchy ended up being offered to Duke Francis III of Lorraine. This was, oddly, part of the settlement of what was called the War of the Polish Succession (1733-1735). The French candidate for the throne of Poland in 1733 was Stanislas Lesczynski, who had briefly been King before (1704-1709) and was the father-in-law of King Louis XV. Russia wanted its own candidate, Augustus II of Saxony. The Russians won. In the protracted deal making that followed the actual war, Stanislas was compensated with Lorraine (which would then be inherited by his daughter, and so by France), and Francis was compensated with Tuscany, which had simply become available with the end of the Medici. Francis, as it happened, was married to the heiress of Austria, Maria Theresa.

And so, the patrimony of the Medici, won with so much blood, betrayal, and political manipulation, was simply swept up, like so much else, in the vast marriage bag of the Hapsburgs. The Medici, like the Pazzi, simply became a name and a memory -- finely parodied in the movie version of Evelyn Waugh's The Loved One [1965], where a Hollywood bearer of the illustrious name does not want to be identified as Italian.

When Maria Theresa's father, Charles VI, died in 1740, this set off the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-1748). When Austria did well enough in the War that Francis was elected Emperor (1745), he and Maria Theresa left Tuscany to their second son, Leopold. Their first son, however, Joseph, died without issue, and so the Empire passed to Leopold. Leopold then left Tuscany to his second son, Ferdinand. This time the Hapsburgs were a bit more fertile, and Tuscany remained in the line of Ferdinand, except for exile during the Revolutionary Era (1801-1814), until the Unification of Italy, when Tuscany voted to join the Kingdom of Sardinia, soon to become the Kingdom of Italy.

During that Revolutionary Era, Napoleon had strangely created a "Kingdom of Etruria" for the Bourbons of Parma, until the area was annexed to France in 1807. The line of those Bourbons can be examined at Parma.

The diagram shows a little more of the Hapsburg family than is necessary just for the Grand Dukes of Tuscany. In particular, it shows the line of the Hapsburg Dukes of Modena, the first of whom, Ferdinand, had married the heiress of the d'Este family, the previous Dukes of Modena, Maria Beatrice. Maria's father had been deposed in 1796. He died in 1803. Presumably, Ferdinand and Maria were both in exile until the defeat of Napoleon in 1814.

With the end of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany, as Italy is being united by Sardinia, the line of the family went elsewhere, as the daughter of the last Duke, Louise, married the last King of Saxony, Frederick Augustus III. Since a King of Saxony originally bumped Francis of Lorraine out of his own Duchy, perhaps it is fitting that Saxony should take in his ultimate heiress of Tuscany. Though the Kingdom of Saxony itself ended in 1918, there are living descendants.

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Dukes of Parma,
Farneses and Bourbons, 1545-1859 AD

Pier LuigiDuke of
& Piacenza,
Alexander I
Regent of the
Ranuccio I1592-1622
Odoardo I1622-1646
Ranuccio II1646-1694
The Duchy of Parma was detached by the Emperor Charles V from Milan to be added to the Papal States, but
Pope Paul III (1534-1549), Paolo Farnese, used it for his illegitimate son, Pier Luigi, instead.

Paolo had been made a Cardinal by Alexander VI (Rodrigo Borgia). The traditional story is that this happned in part perhaps because his sister, the beautiful Giulia Farnese, as we see at right ("Lady with Unicorn," by Rafael Santi), was Alexander's mistress. This now seems unlikely. Giulia was married to Orsino Orsini, from one of the major aristocratic families of Rome, often at odds with the Borgias. Nevertheless, Orsino's mother was a Borgia, and so his little part of the Orsini family was sometimes a friendly part of the Borgia cirle. Nothing of the sort is likely to have been the case were the Pope begetting illegitimate children on Giulia. Paolo already had an honorable eccelesiastical career, and the rumors about Giulia apparently come from political enemies. His own illegitimate son, as it happened, established the Farnese family for some time -- their line continues even today as the Ducal House of Luxembourg.

Alessander I was appointed regent of the Netherlands by King Philip II of Spain at the height of the Dutch revolt. He was ineffective at defeating the United Provinces but did retain what would become Belgium.

This list was originally from Brian Tompsett's Royal and Noble genealogy, which left a few obscurities and hiatuses. Now the genealogy here is from the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [Andreas Thiele, R. G. Fischer Verlag, Part 2, Second Edition, 1997, pp.242-243].

Don Carlos,
Charles I/III
King of Naples
& Sicily
King of Spain
Hapsburg possession,
Annexed to France, 1805-1814
Marie Louise
of Hapsburg
Charles II Louis1848-1849,
Charles III1849-1854
Annexed by Sardinia
to Italy, 1859
The tenure of the Farnese family in Parma continued until the heiress, Elizabeth Farnese, married King Philip V of Spain. She was intent on establishing her sons in Italy, since Philip's sons from his first marriage could be expected to succeed in Spain. She ended up placing Don Carlos in Parma and then, when Sicily and Naples were obtained for him instead, her second son, Philip, got Parma as part of the settlement of the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-1748). Then, however, her step-son King of Spain, Ferdinand VI, died without issue. Carlos/Charles of Naples then succeeded as King of Spain, leaving Sicily and Naples to a younger son. Philip and his descendants continued in Parma.

What happened during the French Revolutionary period is a little confusing, until the region was annexed to France in 1805. The Bourbons seem to have been compensated with Florence during part of the period. In 1814, the Congress of Vienna gave Parma to the widow of Napoleon, Marie Louise of Austria, who, we might think, really had something coming for having endured the marriage to Napoleon:  When he asked her to join him on Elba, or return to France during the 100 days, she declined. Parma was her possession, however, only during her lifetime. It was to be returned to the Bourbons afterwards, and it was, with a little glitch introduced by the revolutionary year of 1848. Meanwhile, the Bourbons, meaning Charles Louis and his mother Maria Louisa, had been compensated with Lucca.

In 1859 a plebiscite voted for union with Sardinia, whence it passed into the Kingdom of Italy when that was formed in 1861. The stranded heir of Parma, Felix, however, married Charlotte, the Grand Dutchess of Luxembourg. In this way, the house of Farnese-Bourbon succeeded to the Grand Duchy, and it continues on the throne there. This may not be the highest profile royalty, but it is a far better fate than that of other Houses dispossessed by modernity. It certainly would have pleased Elizabeth Farnese, back when she put her son Philip on the throne of Parma.

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The Periphery of Francia, South of Italy,
Italia Meridiana, Italia Meridionale
(Meridianalis), Il Mezzogiorno

Dopo Roma, c'e'l'Africa, "After Rome, it's Africa"

(Northern Italian saying)

In the history of Mediaeval Francia, the South of Italy was a distinct cultural and historical region. Indeed, for a long time, we might not regard it as part of Francia at all. Retrieved by Justinian from the Ostrogoths, its story at first was part of that of Romania. Even the intrusion of the Lombards still belongs to the history of Germania in Late Antiquity. There were even many Greek speakers, especially in Sicily, who had been living there since Greek colonization began in the 8th century BC. Some of the thinking now is that Greek may have died out on the mainland in the first centuries AD, but it was then certainly reintroduced by Justinian's reconquest -- and I suspect that it had never died out at Naples.

The dynamic of the Lombard Duchies, surrounded and more or less contained by Romania, was first compromised by the Islamic conquest of Sicily (827-878). This deprived Romania of its local stronghold, safe from the Lombards, in Sicily. Next came the Norman conquest of southern Italy, which then extended also to Sicily. The Normans finished the expulsion of the Romans in 1071, and of Islâm in 1072. This established the region as a distinct part of the Periphery of Francia. It would be the Regnum (Regno), the center of European politics and culture under the brilliant Emperor Frederick II of Hohenstaufen, the Stupor Mundi, "Wonder of the World." The modern tourist might be puzzled to find the massive prophyry sarcophagus of a Mediaeval German Emperor in Palermo. But that was Frederick's capital.

The Regnum did not include Sardinia, but then Sardinia's status is often ambiguous. Since it ended up in the hands of Aragón, it can be treated as part of the Periphery. Later, it passed to Savoy, which puts it in the Core of Francia.
Fiefs of the Regnum,
the Regno, the Mezzogiorno
Kingdom of Sicily & Naples
Anjevian Kingdom of Sicily
Aragonese Kingdom of Sicily
Anjevian Kings of Naples
Aragonese Kingdom of Naples
Savoyard Kingdom of Sicily
Kingdom of the Two Sicilies
Kingdom of Sardinia
Princes of Benevento & Salerno
Princes of Capua, I
Princes of Capua, II
Dukes of Benevento & Spoleto
Dukes of Naples, Amalfi, & Gaeta
Counts of Capua
Counts of Aversa
Knights of Malta
This is the kind of ambiguity characteristic through the Middle Ages of Italy as a whole -- Spoleto, which begins as one of the detached southern Lombard Duchies, becomes more fully integrated into Lombardy and Francia after the Carolingian conquest -- the actual arrival of the Franks -- rendering its own assignment, like Sardinia, ambiguous. But the cultural ambiguity of the South went even deeper, since for a while Latin (proto-Italian), Greek, and Arabic were almost equally current, and, for example, Frederick II evidently spoke all three. Suspected of being a Muslim, or even an atheist, and certainly a free-thinker, Frederick was a scandal of the age.

The Regnum was unusual among the territories of Francia in that the Normans received it as a fief directly from the Papacy. That was a theoretical curiosity -- ironically part of the settlement after Pope Leo IX had been defeated and captured at the Battle of Civitate in 1053 -- but in practice had little effect on the behavior either of the Normans or of Frederick II. It had some significance when the Pope, as suzerain, got Charles of Anjou to exterminate the Hohenstaufen. But then Sicily revolted against Charles in 1282 -- the "Sicilian Vespers," one of the most dramatic events of the Middle Ages -- and attached itself, to the chagrin and fury of the Pope, to Aragón. Eventually, Sicily, Sardinia, and Naples all ended up in the hands of the Kings of Aragón, and so finally the Kings of Spain.

Even Napoleon, although annexing Rome itself and ruling the north as the King of Italy, kept the south as a separate Kingdom. The Congress of Vienna restored the Bourbons, who had maintained themselves in Sicily, to the whole of Sicily and Naples, now called the Kingdom of the "Two Sicilies". This was the situation until 1860, when Garibaldi landed in Sicily with the intention of reunited Italy. The Kings of Sardinia became the Kings of an Italy, now joining the north and south for the first time since the Lombards invaded in 568 -- 1293 years.

The South, however, remained distinct in language, culture, food, and economic development. The dialects of Naples and Sicily are still pretty much unintelligible to Northern Italians, where the standard language of Italy is based on the dialect of Florence. But the most serious disability of the South has been its economy, even though in 1860 Naples was still the larget city in Italy. From being one of the cultural centers of Europe in the 13th century, Sicily and Naples entered the 20th century with little better than a Third World level of economic development. Up in the rugged mountains of the area, life had not changed much for some centuries.

Hence, the first large body of Italian immigrants to the United States were from the South -- and suspicious of things like public education the way they had been suspicious of the designs of national authority back in Italy. They were hard working and often skilled but not, at first, particularly entrepreneurial. And they brought along the high level of potential violence traditionally found (and still found, in great measure, today) in Naples and Sicily. Ironically, this often reduced crime in some Manhattan neighborhoods. Previously, a great deal of violence and crime in New York City was due to Irish-Americans. The Irish found out very quickly, however, that Italians were usually armed, at least with a knife, and were not at all reluctant to fiercely defend themselves. Italian women, who in Mediterranean fashion held their honor as worth their lives, were dangerous targets for crime or even insult; and their relatives were ready to exact terrible revenge for any level of outrage. Italian neighborhoods became no-go areas for Irish toughs.

At the same time, the age old form of Sicilian crime, in the Mafia (Moranu li Franchiski, "Death to the French," dating to the Sicilian Vespers), immigrated also. This could involve legitimate business, such as the importation of olive oil, and could also reduce street crime, with ferocious sanctions for unauthorized illegalities; but, of course, its dark side began to give Italians a certain kind of reputation, especially when Prohibition created a vast Black Market, with a high level of demand, for illegal alcohol. After Prohibition, gansterism easily continued through gambling, prostitution, drugs, and labor unions -- where the frequent role of the latter in the equivalent of strong-arm extortion rackets (see On the Waterfront, 1954) and money laundering operations (see Casino, 1995) perfectly suited them for Mafia infiltration and control. A casual mention by Rodney Dangerfield of Mafia control of garbage collector unions in Back To School (1986) was followed by actual prosecutions of this connection in New York City. We are still waiting to find out what happened to Jimmy Hoffa, whose 1975 fate remains chillingly concealed by the omertà, the secrecy of Mafia operations.

Most modern Italian-Americans, however, have left the Mafia far behind. Little Italy in Manhattan is now mostly overrun with immigrants from China, and tourists looking for Italian restaurants on Mulberry Street must be startled that Chinatown has grown completely around the area. In 1980, the average family income of Italian-American families was actually higher than that of German-Americans and Anglo-Saxons (cf. Thomas Sowell, Ethnic America, 1981, p.5). Some distinctively Italian dishes, like spaghetti and pizza, have become so Americanized (often quite different from the Italian originals) that they are all but essential to American national identity -- and there is no certainty that popular and successful pizza chains, for instance, are run or even founded by Italians.

Although some famous Italian gangsters still loom in recent memory, like John Gotti (1940-2002), organized crime today might be expected to involve Ukranians, Columbians, or Mexicans before Italians. Fictional orgaized crime, however, has featured a New Jersey Italian crime family on the HBO series The Sopranos (1999-2007). But this has been followed by new stereotypes that have emerged with the "Guidos," i.e. Italian-Americans, seen on the popular MTV series, Jersey Shore. But drunk, stupid, and promiscuous do not seem like an improvement for the image of the successful and prosperous Italian-American community. The cast, filming a season of Jersey Shore in Italy, became an embarrassment to the Italian government -- not to mention to America. New Jersey governor Chris Christie denounced the show with the information that all but one of the cast members is actually from New York. The South of Italy, meanwhile, remains troubled with crime and poverty, with outrages by the Mafia fresh in recent memory.

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Dukes and Princes of Benevento and Spoleto, 571-1053

Dukes of Benevento
Monte Cassino sacked & abandoned, 580
Arechi I591-641
Aione I641-642
Grimoaldo I647-662
King of
Romoaldo I662-677
campaign of Constans II, 663
Grimoaldo II677-680
Gisulf I680-706
Romoaldo II706-732
Monte Cassino resettled, 718
Gisulf II743-749
Arechi(s) II758-774
Lombard Kingdom
annexed to Francia, 774
Grimoaldo III788-806
Grimoaldo IV806-817
Dukes of Spoleto
Faroald Ic.570-584
Transamund Ic.665-703
Faroald II703-720+
Transamund II720+-739,
Aistulf of FriuliKing of
Ratchis of FriuliKing of
of Brescia
King of
to the Franks
The history of the Duchy of Benevento spans the entire period that might be considered the toughest times for European civilization. Rome was on the rebound, after
Justinian's reconquest of North Africa and Italy, when the invasion of the Lombards in 568 permanently set back the economic and social recovery of Italy. It wasn't just that the Lombards took much of the peninsula, but that they fragmented it, with the main Lombard Kingdom in the north separated by the Rome-Ravenna corridor from the Duchies of Spoleto and Benevento in the south. This fragmentation complicated both reconquest by Romania and complete conquest by Lombardy. It also, however, made it possible for Benevento to survive the extinction of the Kingdom of Lombardy itself in 774 -- this is the point where Benevento becomes a Principality. Nor were the Lombards nearly as benign suzerains as even the Ostrogoths had been. Surrounded by larger and small pockets of Roman territory, the Lombards of the Duchies ravaged the South of Italy and extended the destruction and the depopulation that had begun with the wars agains the Goths. The great monastery of Monte Cassino was sacked around 580 and then abandoned by its monks, not to be reoccupied until 718. Just once, the power of Romania was concentrated against Benevento, when the Emperor Constans II landed with an army in 663. Without meeting defeat, Constans nevertheless quickly became discouraged at the difficulty of taking Lombard mountain fortresses without long sieges. After visiting Rome and Naples, he then marched away to Sicily -- where his assassination ended any sustained Roman focus on Italy. The strategic difficulties of Constans in central Italy, of course, would return to haunt the Allies as they fought their way north in World War II -- with the famous decision whether to bomb Monte Cassino, because of the suspicion that the Germans were using it. As it happened, of course, the Allies did, but the Germans weren't.

Spoleto, beginning about the same time as Benevento, but with a somewhat more obscure history, was not so lucky when it came to the Frankish conquest. With three Dukes doubling as Kings of Lombardy, and some of them also Dukes of Friuli, Spoleto clearly had stronger ties to Northern Italy, and so was more vulnerable to the fate of the Kingdom. Spoleto was then revived, however, as a Duchy or Margravate under the Carolingians. As such it survived until Berengar II of Italy, who took it from the last Margrave, who had become Pope John XII, in 959. Otto I then made it part of the Papal States. Spoleto thus belongs to Italy as part of Franica Media, while Benevento shares the fate of Southern Italy, in the Periphery of Francia.

Princes of BeneventoPrinces of Salerno
Radelchi(s) I839-849Sikenolf,
Sicone II
Bari held by Arabs, 847-871; The Divisio of Benevento & Salerno, 849
Emperor Louis II resident at Benevento, 866-871; ejects Arabs from Bari, 871; ejected from Benevento, 871; dies at Capua, 875Ademar856-861
Radelchi(s) II881-885,
Waimar I
Monte Cassino sacked by Arabs & abandoned, 883
Aio(ne) II885-891
occupied by Romanian Strategos, 891-895
Guy/Wido (IV) of Spoleto895-900
Atenulf I of Capua900-910Guaimar,
Waimar II
Prince of Capua, 887-910
Landulf I910-943
Arab base at Garigliano River (c.884) wiped out in combined operation, 915; victory over Romania at Basintello River, 929; Monte Cassino reoccupied, 934
Atenulf II911-940
Atenulf III of Carinola933-943
Landulf II943-961Gisulf I 933-977
Landulf of Conza973-974
943-959, 961-981Pandulf I Ironhead977-981
Landulf III959-968
Landulf IV968-981
981-1014Pandulf II977-981
Manso, Duke of Amalfi981-983
Landulf V987-1033John983-999
Pandulf III1014-1053,
Waimar III999-1030
Landulf VI1038-1053, 1054-1077Guimario, Waimar IV1030-1052
Papal Fief, 1051; Norman occupation, ceded to Pope by Emperor Henry III, 1053
Rodolf1053-1054patron of
the Normans,
Pandulf IV1056-1074Gisulf II1052-1077
restored by Normans
to Papacy, 1077
to Normans, 1077

Counts of Capua
Landulf I the Old840-843
Lando I843-861
effectively independent of Salerno, c.860
Lando II Cyruttu861, deposed
Pando il Rapace861-862
Pandenulf862-863, 879-882
Landulf II il Vescovo863-866, 871-879
Lambert I866-871
Duke of Spoleto, 866-879
Lando III882-885
Landenulf I885-887
Atenulf I887-910
Landulf III901-910
reunited with Benevento, 910-982
With the Franks and Germans coming and going, and Romania never far away, southern Italy was a busy place for the next couple of centuries, but without radical changes. The old balance of power was finally upset with the arrival of the
Normans. In short order, all of southern Italy was in their hands, and the line of Lombards in Benevento finally fell to history. The Normans, however, did not hold Benevento all that long. It became an outlying Papal possession in 1139 and remained so until Napoleon arrived in 1806.

Princes of Capua
Landulf VI981-982
Landenulf II982-993
Landulf VII999-1007
Pandulf II1007-1022
Pandulf III1009-1014
Pandulf IV, Wolf of the Abruzzi1016-1022, 1026-1038, 1047-1050
Pandulf V1022-1026
Guaimar (IV)Prince of Salerno, 1030-1052
Pandulf VI1050-1057
Landulf VIII1057-1058
Norman Conquest

The Normans represented the first intimation of modern Europe. England would soon cease to be some strange Anglo-Saxon place and would receive the French infusion, from the Norman conquest (1066), that would characterize it ever since. Romania was gone from Italy forever (1071). And the Crusades (1092) would revive trade, urban life, and a cash economy -- features that had been preserved by Romania and Southern Italian cities like Naples and Amalfi but which had been largely missing from the rest of Christendom for centuries. The Italian cities, indeed, had maintained their trade in great measure through commerce with Islam, something that had always scandalized the Popes and became increasingly awkward in dealings with other Christian states.

The original lists here were from Bruce R. Gordon's Regnal Chronologies. The treatment of Benevento and Salerno has now been revised on the basis of Before the Normans, Southern Italy in the Ninth & Genth Centuries, by Barbara M. Kreutz [University of Pennsylvania Press, 1991]. Her Appendix with the succession of "Southern Lombard Rulers" is revealing but has some lacunae and obscurities and does not continue all the way to the Norman Conquest, which is not entirely consistent with the purpose of the book. Also, the long line of Dukes of Capua, given in full by Gordon, is barely touched upon by Kreutz. I found the treatment of Capua at Wikipedia to be clearer than Gordon's lists, and so I have supplied tables for the earlier independent Counts and the later independent Princes. I have had trouble with several rulers of Benevento, especially late ones, listed by Gordon, who seem to represent rivals or coregents, but who are not present in Kreutz's list at all. I have tried to get this organized, which is why there are several cases of overlapping dates. Where the dates differ between Gordon and Kreutz, I have tried to use the latter, but in some cases it was impossible to know what the right idea would be.

A correspondent, Jan van den Burg, has drawn my attention to some problems in Gordon's lists, e.g. he has Grimoaldo II ruling from 687 to 680, which is a good trick without a time machine. Wikipedia has 677-680.

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Dukes of Naples, Amalfi, & Gaeta

Ἡ δὲ Νεάπολις καὶ ἡ Ἀμάλφη καὶ ἡ Συρεντὸς ὑπῆρχον
ἀεὶ ὑπὸ τὸν βασιλέα Ῥωμαίων.
Naples and Amalfi and Sorrento have always been subject
to the Emperor of the Romans.

Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus (d.959 AD), "Of the province of Lombardy and of the principalities and governorships therein," De Administrando Imperio [Dumbarton Oaks Texts, Greek text edited by Gy. Moravcsik, 1967, 2008, pp.116-117]

Naples was originally a Greek colony, the northernmost in Italy. The date of its founding is obscure, and it seemed have a closer relationship to Syracuse in Sicily than to a founding city back in Greece. Its original name was Παρθενόπη, Parthenópê -- one of the Sirens who was believed to have lured Odysseus in the vicinity -- but it came to be known as the "New City," Νεάπολις, Neápolis (11 Parthenope is now an asteroid).

This becomes Napoli in Italian, although Napule in the local dialect of Naples. "Naples" is a plural form in English (like Flanders), and this is probably because "Napoli" looks like a plural in Italian (sing. *Napolo). But the "i" is no more than an artifact of the vowel in the Greek name, so the English form is based on a misapprehension, unlike the case with Flanders, which is a plural in Dutch.
Dukes of Naples
Visit by Constans II, 663
Theophilatus I666-670
Andrew I673-677
Caesarius I677-681
Caesarius II706-711
John I711-719
Gregory I740-755
Stephen II755-766
Papal suzerainty, 763
Gregory II767-794
Theophilatus II794-801
unknown, 818-821
Stephen III821-832
coins without Roman Emperor
Andrew II834-840
hires Arab mercenaries, 835
complete independence, 840
Sergio I Contardo840-860
Arab fleet destroyed off Ostia by force organized by Pope Leo IV & commanded by Caesar, son of the Duke, 849
unknown, 860-864
Gregory III864-870
Sergio II870-877
Fleet arrives from Romania to patrol against Arabs, 879; Duke excommunicated by Pope John VIII for collaborating with the Arabs, 880; whole Duchy excommunicated, 881
Gregory IV898-915
John II915-919
Marino I919-928
John III928-968
Arab fleet destroyed off Provence by Romania, 941
Marino II968-975?
Sergio III975?-999?
John IV999?-1002
Sergio IV1002-1027,
To Capua,
John V1036-1050
Sergio V1050-1082?
Sergio VI1082?-1097?
John VI1097?-1120
Sergio VII1120-1139
To Kingdom of
Naples & Sicily

The Greek form of the name is remembered in the English adjective "Neapolitan," from Greek Νεαπολίτης (Italian Napolitano), which is applied to ice cream as well as to the city and its inhabitants (with the Italian form as a common surname).

Other Greek colonies were also the "New City," including one in Palestine whose name is now rendered in Arabic as . The great opponent of Rome, Carthage, was, of course, a Phoenician colony. Its name in Punic also meant "New City," Qart-ḥadašt ( in the Hebrew equivalent, writing the "t" in the adjective that is latent in what is ordinarily written and pronounced as an "h" in Hebrew and Arabic). In Italian usage, there was also a Napoli di Romania, a Naples in Mediaeval Romania; but this was the Greek city of Nauplia, Ναυπλία, or Nauplion, Ναύπλιον, in Modern Greek pronounced Nafplio. This could also be Naioplia in Italian, and in Turkish could even be called the Mora Yenişehiri, i.e. the "New City" (the "new, its city," ) of the Morea, the Mediaeval Peloponnesus. Nauplia was the capital of Modern Greece from 1821 to 1834.

The Bay of Naples became a resort in the Roman period. The delightful prospect of Mt. Vesuvius at the head of the Bay became a byword for disaster when the volcano erupted in 79 AD, burying Pompeii, Herculaneum, and other towns under ash. The Roman naturalist, Pliny the Elder, observed the volcano from the naval base at Misenum, where he had been put in command by Nero, just outside the Bay to the north. Taking to boat to observe the eruption better, Pliny landed on the south shore of the Bay, planning to spend the night. He was too close to the volcano, however, and he seems to have been asphyxiated by an outflow of gas. His body was neither burned nor buried. Naples itself, potentially in some danger from Vesuvius, has suffered ashfalls from it at times over the years but has not been catastrophically affected. On the other hand, Naples is adjacent to a dormant caldera of a much larger volcano, whose eruption would be far more disastrous than anything that Vesuvius has done. With it, however, it is not clear what sort of timeline we're looking at.

Naples passed with Italy to the Ostrogoths, but then was recovered by Belisarius. After the advent of the Lombards, the city became isolated from other Roman possessions. Visited by Constans II in 663, it began to drift into autonomy, like Venice, under its own Dukes -- i.e. the Dux, "Leader," a Roman frontier military commander -- rendered δούξ in Greek. By 840, all remnants of Roman control had disappeared, and Duke Stephen II had already acknowledged the (ineffective) overlordship of the Pope in 763 (after the fall of Ravenna in 751).
Dukes of Gaeta
John I877-933
Arab base at Garigliano River, c.884; wiped out in combined operation, 915
John II933-962
John III966-?
John IV984-1008
John V991-1012
Leo I1012-1015
John VI1012-1040
Leo II1015-1021
Emilia 1023-1032
to Salerno
The history of Naples as an independent city-state, however, was soon compromised by its inability to hold onto its own outliers.
Dukes of Amalfi
Sergio I958-966
Manso(ne) I966-1004
Giovanni I1004-1007
Sergio II1007-1028
Giovanni II1028-1034
Mansone II1034-1038
Sergio III1038-1039
Guimario I
Mansone III1043-1052
Giovanni III1052-1069
Giovanni IV1069-1073
To Apulia, 1073-1088
Gisulf of Salerno1088-1089
To Apulia1089-1096
Marino Sebasto1096-1100
To Apulia; sacked by Pisa, 1133

Gaeta, up the coast, and Amalfi, on the southern peninsula of the Bay of Naples, themselves became in time autonomous and independent. All of the cities, however, faced common threats. The southern Lombards, of course, were a continual problem; but even the Lombards, with everyone else, needed to worry about a new enemy:  the Arabs. Sicily, invaded by Aghlabids in 827, was completely conquered by them with the fall of Syracuse in 878. This campaign put Arab forces in Italian waters. The Vatican and Ostia were sacked in 846; but then the Pope was able to assemble a local fleet that defeated the Arabs in 849. This did not end the Arab threat, but it meant that perhaps it could be handled. In 846 a group of raiders had been stranded on a hilltop west of Tivoli, north-east of Rome. Surrounded, they agreed to convert to Christianity and settle on the spot, which even today is the village of Saracenesco (i.e. of the Saracens).

Meanwhile, Naples had been suspected of collaborating, and even of offering refuge to the defeated Arab fleet, even though the Christian fleet had been commanded by Caesar, son of the Duke of Naples. The Arab fleet, in any case, was finished off by a storm at sea. Similarly, Gaeta apparently tolerated the base of Arab raiders established on the Garigliano River in the 880's, despite its actions like the sacking of Monte Cassino, since the Arabs actually helped protect Gaeta from local enemies. Pope John X secured the neutrality of Gaeta, and in 915 the Arab base was surrounded and annihilated in a combined operation of the Papacy, Capua, Benevento, Salerno, Spoleto, and even a fleet from Romania.

Beginning in the 9th century, with the Macedonian Emperors, we see a revival of the power of Romania and an extension of Roman possessions against the Lombards in the South of Italy. This culminated in an ambitious and initially successful counter-invasion of Sicily commanded by George Maniaces (1037-1038). However, conflict among commanders, suspicion of the loyalty of Maniaces, and finally a revolt of Norman mercenaries (1040) led to a rapid collapse of the Roman position in Italy, as examined in the following section.

Shipping supplied to the First Crusade (1096-1099) initially involved Amalfi, which might have joined Venice, Genoa, Pisa, and other Italian cities in the future growth of Mediterranean trade. However, the restless Lombards, and an even newer enemy, the Normans, would spell the final end of independent cities in the South of Italy. We soon cease to hear of Naples or Amalfi in the Italian commerce that would dominate the former Mare Nostrum. Indeed, Amalfi would be sacked by Pisa in 1133 -- one of whose greatest prizes was a copy of the Justinian's Digest of Roman Law. Such a thing probably dated from the days of Romanian administration.

Naples, however, would soon become the capital of Southern Italian Kingdoms, Sicily and/or Naples, all the way into the 19th century. But the days of the commercial importance of Naples and Amalfi would be over, sunk in the domination, and then the stagnation, of the Mezzogiorno Kingdoms. Commercial prominence passed to the North -- to Pisa, Venice, and Genoa. In 1406 Pisa itself would be defeated and absorbed by Florence, with the copy of Justinian's Digest seized by the victors. It joined other copies of Justinian's Code in renewed study of Roman law.

The maps of Southern Italy featured in this section and in other sections on this webpage are adapted from the map of 980 AD in Before the Normans, Southern Italy in the Ninth & Tenth Centures, by Barbara K. Kreutz [University of Pennsylania Press, 1991, p.xvi]. The maps for other dates (737, 888, 1025, 1042, 1071, 1092, 1130, & 1173) are based on The Norman Conquest of Southern Italy and Sicily, by Gordon S. Brown [McFarland & Company, Inc., 2003, p.11], The Anchor Atlas of World History, Volume I [Hermann Kinder, Werner Hilgemann, Ernest A. Menze, and Harald and Ruth Bukor, 1974, p.118], the Historical Atlas of the World [Barnes & Noble, 1970, 1972, p.38; original edition by Oddvar Bjørklung, Haakon Holmboe, and Aders Røhr, J.W. Cappelengs Forlag, Oslo, 1962], and The New Penguin Atlas of Medieval History [Colin McEvedy, 1992]. The is considerably uncertainty about precise borders, and the sources do not always agree.

Rome and Romania Index

Italia Index

Perifrancia Index

Francia Index

Philosophy of History

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Copyright (c) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2018, 2019 Kelley L. Ross, Ph.D. All Rights Reserved

Norman, Anjevian, Aragonese, & Bourbon Counts, Dukes, and Kings of Sicily and Naples, 1042-1860

Never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line!

Wallace Shawn, The Princess Bride, 1987

I guess it's the Sicilian in me, but if someone ever looks at me wrong, I'm like "I wish you nothing but death forever."

Emily Compagno, Gutfled!, 22 January 2024

The South of Italy, except for the Lombard Duchy of Benevento, its offshoots, like Salerno and Capua, and the city-state Republics, led by Dukes, of Naples, Amalfi, and Gaeta, remained within Romania until the Islâmic conquest of Sicily. As a whole, it entered the Frankish world only when the Normans expelled both Moslems and Romania.

Counts of Aversa
Rainulf I1030-1045
Rainulf II Trincanocte1045-1048
Princes of Capua
Richard I of AversaAversa, 1049-1078
Capua, 1058-1078
Jordan I1078-1091
Richard II1091-1092,
Lando IV1092-1098
Robert I1106-1120
Richard III1120
Jordan II1120-1127
Robert II1127-1135,
To Apulia
This created a kingdom that, for a time, especially under the Emperor
Frederick II, was the center of European politics. Frederick's kingdom passed into the hands of Charles of Anjou, who lost Sicily in the famous revolt of the Sicilian Vespers in 1282. Sicily and Naples then continued separately or together until the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies was overrun by Garbaldi, fighting for a united Kingdom of Italy, in 1860. Sardinia had been alternatively controlled by Romania, by Islâm, by the mainland Empire, and by Spain. It ultimately passed to the Dukes of Savoy, who then styled themselves the kings of Sardinia and became the kings of a united Italy.

Southern Italy and Sicily had not been united with the North since the Lombard invasion of 568, and then Sicily was detached from Romania by the Aghlabids between 827 and 878. The Normans, mainly through one group of brothers, ended all this by uniting the whole area, in 1139, one of the great achievements of Norman arms -- following by a few years the conquest of England by Duke William of Normandy in 1066.

The feat of Italian conquest was accomplished more slowly than England, beginning with the arrival of Norman mercenaries, helping the Lombards, just in time to be defeated by Basil Boioannes, the Byzantine/Romanian governor, at Cannae in 1018. Soon Normans were fighting for Boioannes, not against. When the German Emperor Henry II invaded Italy in 1022, Normans fought both for and against him, and decisively against him at the failed siege of the Byzantine stronghold of Troia in April, May, and June. Amid all the shuffling alliances, in 1030 the Norman Rainulf was presented with a fief, at Aversa, by the Duke of Naples, Sergio IV, whose sister he then married. This was the first Norman landed possession in Italy. When his wife died in 1034, however, Rainulf switched loyalties to Pandulf IV, the "Wolf of the Abruzzi," Prince of Capua

the de Hauteville brothers arrive in Italy from Normandy, 1035
William Iron Armmercenary for Romania in Sicily, 1038-1040
Count of Apulia
becomes "Iron Arm" by defeating the Amir of Syracuse in single combat, 1040; joins rebellion in Italy, 1040; Battles of Venosa/Olviento & Montepeloso, in Apulia, Romania defeated, 1041
DrogoCount of Apulia
Humphrey de
Count of Apulia
defeated & captured Pope Leo IX at Civitate, 1053
Robert GuiscardCount of Apulia
Duke of Apulia
& Calabria
invasion of Sicily, 1061; capture of Bari, last Romanian city in Italy, 1071; capture of Palermo, 1072; rescues Pope Gregory VII from Imperial forces, but troops loot and burn Rome, 1084
Roger ICount of Sicily
conquest of Malta, 1090; conquest of Sicily completed, 1091
Roger BorsaDuke of Apulia
SimonCount of Sicily
Roger II

Count of Sicily
Duke of Apulia
& Calabria
King of Sicily
(& Naples, 1138)
defeated & captured Pope Innocent II at Galluccio, annexation of Naples, 1139; attack on Corinth and Thebes, silk workers kidnapped and deported to Sicily and Calabria along with mulberry crops and production machinery, 1147
WilliamDuke of Apulia
William I the BadKing of Sicily
(& Naples)
gift of a copy of Ptolemy's Almagest by the Emperor Manuel I (1143-1180); revolt and unsuccessful campaign in Italy by Michael Palaeologus, 1155-1156
William II
the Good
William III1194
Henry (VI)Emperor
son-in-law of Roger II
Frederick I
(II of the Empire)
King of

Conrad (IV)1250-1254
defeated with Epirotes by Empire of Nicaea, Battle of Pelagonia, 1259; killed by Charles I of Anjou, 1266
killed by Charles I of Anjou, 1268; Kingdom passes to Anjevians

In 1035 began the sojourn of a group of brothers, the de Hautevilles, from Normandy. They enlisted with Rainulf, who in 1036 defected from Pandulf to Guimario (or Waimar, Gaimar, Guaimar) IV (or V), Prince of Salerno. With the help of the Emperor Conrad II, Guimario was installed in Capua and Pandulf fled. Rainulf's fief was transfered to Salerno and he was installed by the Emperor himself as a Prince of the Empire.

When Constantinople attempted a reconquest of Sicily (1038-1040), under the gifted but mercurial leadership of George Maniakes, the de Hautevilles were part of a contingent contributed by the Prince of Salerno/Capua. The eldest brother, William de Hauteville, distinguished himself. At the seige of Syracuse, an Arab sortee from the city led to William killing the Amîr in single combat, earning himself the sobriquet "Iron Arm" (Bras de Fer). This may have been the Amîr of Sicily itself, Abddullâh, who is otherwise reported to have died in the same year (1040). The fall of Syracuse, at the time, was in vain. Maniakes offended the Normans, who returned to Italy. A victim of Court intrigue, Maniakes was then recalled to Constantiople and imprisoned. Rebellion then began in Italy, which soon destroyed the position of Romania in Italy and, for the time being, led to the Christian abandonment of Sicily (1042).

After disputes among the local Lombards about leadership, with some of them even going over to Romania, in 1042 William de Hauteville was elected by the Normans to be the Count of Apulia. This was confirmed by Guimario of Salerno, who in turn was proclaimed Duke of Apulia and Calabria. However, in 1047 the Emperor Henry III intervened in Southern Italy, returning Capua to Pandulf the Wolf and reducing Guimario to Prince of Salerno but confirming Drogo, William's brother and successor, as Count of Apulia. This intervention was part of the colorful history of the Papacy, especially the unique triple tenure of Benedict IX, whom Henry replaced with Clement II in 1046 -- the Pope who then crowned him Emperor.

Robert Guiscard de Hauteville became Duke of Apulia and Calabria in 1059. By 1071 the last city of Romania in Italy, Bari, had been taken by Guiscard, who then spent a lot of time trying to expand against Romania on the mainland of the Balkans. He kept defeating Alexius Comnenus, memorably at Dyrrhachium in 1082, where many Englishmen from the Varangian Guard fell; but Alexius nevertheless maintained his resistance until defeating his son Bohemond at Larissa in 1083, after which the Norman invasion collapsed. Guiscard returned in 1085. After defeating the Venetian fleet, the Norman army was incapacitated by disease, which then carried off Guiscard himself.

In 1061 Sicily was invaded by Roger de Hauteville (Count of Sicily in 1072) and the conquest completed by 1091. When the mainland territory was inherited by Roger in 1127, he turned the whole area into the Kingdom of Sicily, the Regnum. This involved some difficult diplomacy. As the price of his support, Roger obtained a Crown from Pope Anacletus II, who, despite residing in Rome, lost support elsewhere to a rival, Innocent II, who canvased the rulers of Europe, obtaining, with the help of St. Bernard of Clairvaux, their support. Although Anacletus could claim a legitimate election, and lived out his reign in Rome, he is now regarded as an Anti-Pope. Free of his rival, who predeceased him, Innocent was not going to recognize Roger's kingship, and it was not until the Normans captured him at Galluccio in 1139 that Innocent was prepared to confirm the existence of the Kingdom. Since the Pope was often at odds with the German Emperors, it remained sensible to court the support of the Normans, who had previously rescued Gregory VII. Sometimes things worked this way, sometimes not; and the Popes sometimes tried playing the Germans off the Normans. Usually, since the Germans left, this strategy could not be maintained. The status of the Regnum continued to sometimes be disputed by Popes and Emperors, with Romania sometimes also trying to reestablish itself in Italy.

In Palermo, with Arab, Greek, and Latin influences all affecting the culture, policy, and art, we see mosaics representing King Roger in Byzantine form and identified in Greek as Ῥογέριος Ῥήξ. "King" would be Rex in Latin, and Ῥήξ is Rex borrowed into Mediaeval Greek, as I have discussed elsewhere. It is noteworthy that the Sicilian artists, who may in fact have come from Constantinople, accepted this terminology, which actually implied subordination to the Emperor of Romania.

Since Apulia and Calabria are not Sicily, modern usage has tended to characterize the Kingdom as that of Sicily and Naples, but this was not the construction at the time -- Naples was not even acquired until 1139, and even then the Mainland Capital of the Kingdom remained at Salerno -- and the divergence has resulted in some peculiarities (i.e. the "Two Sicilies"), as discussed below. In one form or another, this Kingdom survived as a distinct political unit, though often with Sicily and Naples divided, until 1861. But it would never again be as fragmented as it was at the time that the Normans arrived in the 11th century.

While Naples had fallen to Roger II, his first cousin Bohemond had gone on the First Crusade and become the first Prince of Antioch, founding a line that continued (though one heiress, Constance) until the end of Outremer, and which later included Kings of Cyprus and Jerusalem. Maria of Antioch even married an Emperor of Romania, Manuel I Comnenus.

Meanwhile, the Pope got some bad news:  The German Emperor Henry VI of Hohenstaufen had married the heiress Constance of Sicily and Naples. The domain of the Pope's greatest protectors was suddenly in the hands of his greatest enemies, though it was a few years before the son of Henry and Constance, Frederick II, reached his majority and began to give the Popes the kind of trouble that they would have expected. This all turned out to be trouble indeed, but eventually Frederick died, his son had only a brief reign, Germany pretty much lapsed into anarchy, and the Popes could begin plotting the end of the Hohenstaufen. This was accomplished through Charles of Anjou, the brother of King Louis IX (St. Louis) of France. Charles defeated and killed Frederick's illegitimate son Manfred, and his legitimate grandson Conradin. What he hadn't reckoned on was public opinion, which tore Sicily from his grasp in 1282 and destroyed his plans to move on to Constantinople, if not Jerusalem.

The following genealogical tables follows the relevant descendants of Tancred de Hauteville, including the Princes of Antioch and the Hohenstaufen, and then the Anjevians and Bourbons. This has taken some piecing together, since Sicily and Naples form another one of those places that is peripheral to most histories (like Lorraine, Burgundy, & Navarre). This uses the trees and information in Byzantium, The Decline and Fall, John Julius Norwich [Knopf, 1996, pp. xxiv-xxv], The Normans in the South, 1016-1130, by John Julius Norwich [1967, Faber and Faber, 2010, pp.332-334], The Kingdom in the Sun, 1130-1194, by John Julius Norwich [1970, Faber and Faber, 2010, pp.394-395], A History of the Crusades, by Steven Runciman, Volume II, The Kingdom of Jerusalem and the Frankish East 1100-1187 [Cambridge University Press, 1951,1993, p. 492], and Volume III, The Kingdom of Acre and the Later Crusades [1951, 1993, pp. 530-531], The Norman Conquest of Southern Italy and Sicily, by Gordon S. Brown [McFarland & Company, 2003], and the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, by Andreas Thiele, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [R. G. Fischer Verlag, Part 2, Second Edition, 1997, pp.205-207]. These are supplemented with information from other prose histories, like Medieval Europe by Martin Scott [Longmans, London, 1964, 1967], and on line from Brian Tompsett's Royal and Noble genealogy.

Note that sometimes the numbering of the Aragonese Kings of Sicily is complicated by counting the Emperor Frederick II as King Frederick I of Sicily. Also note that although Jerusalem had fallen to Saladin in 1187, the Kingdom of Jerusalem continued to consist of coastal cities, like Acre, until 1291. These possessions are only called the "Kindgom of Acre" in modern scholarship. Charles of Anjou petitioned the Pope for the title for Jerusalem, which was granted, but the nobles of Outremer, who always regarded the office as elective, chose King Hugh III of Cyprus.

Charles I
of Anjou
King of Sicily,
the Sicilian Vespers,
30 March 1282;
Sicily revolts against &
massacres the French;
Pedro III of Aragon,
with money from
Michael Palaeologus,
invited in; Aragonese
line begins in Sicily
Charles of Anjou took up an offer from the Pope to rid Sicily and Naples of the last of the Hohenstaufen. This he was able to do, and he immediately began preparing to rid Romania of the
Palaeologi also, expecting to realize an Imperial crown for himself.

One of the most dramatic events of the Middle Ages destroyed his plans. A French soldier insulted a local woman in Palermo, as she was going into Church for Vespers. This was as much a bad idea then as it still would be today, and by the day's end all the French in Palermo were dead and Sicily was in full revolt. Such was the "Sicilian Vespers," the last great moment of Sicily in European history.

Even now, the word "Mafia" is sometimes said to be a contraction of "Death to the French" in Italian (Moranu li Franchiski in 13th century Sicilian). Pedro of Aragon lent help to the Sicilians, and the island was soon lost forever to the Anjevians. A cadet line of Aragon was begun there, eventually to attach it to Spain.

A nice detail of the Sicilian war was when an Anjevian fleet raised the Sicilian siege of the Anjevians in Malta. When word got to the Aragonese admiral in Messina, Roger of Lauria (1245-1305), he immediately headed for Malta. Although he could have surprised the Anjevians, he alerted them to his presence, drew them out, let them expend their arrows and other missiles, and then attacked and crushed them -- 8 July 1283. Of 19 Anjevian galleys, 14 were destroyed, with no Aragonese losses. Roger defeated the Anjevians in five more battles, helping to ensure the defeat of Charles of Anjou. It is a nice touch that this began at Malta, considering the later, spectacular history of the place.

The following table follows the whole House of Anjou from Charles I to the end of its career in Naples, including the branch that was established in Hungary.

The Anjevian genealogy contains two persons after whom Franciscan Missions in California were named. One is Louis IX of France, brother of Charles of Anjou, for whom the Mission "San Luis Rey de Francia," near Oceanside, is named. The other is a son of Charles II, St. Louis the Bishop of Toulouse, for whom the Mission (and city) of "San Luis Obispo" is named. Apart from specific information about the Missions, I had never seen Louis of Toulouse listed as an Anjevian.
Kings of (First) Sicily
Pedro III,
I of Sicily
James II of Aragon1285-1296
Frederick II (or I)1296-1337
Peter II1337-1342
Duke of
Frederick III (or II)
the Simple
Duke of
Duchess of
Martin I the Younger1390-1409
Martin the Older,
the Humane,
II of Sicily
Interregnum, 1410-1412
Ferdinand ISicily &
Now I find him, indeed, as a son of Charles II in the Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa [Andreas Thiele, R. G. Fischer Verlag, Second Edition, 1997, p.202] -- which, however, shows him dying in 1298 rather than 1297.

Kings of Naples
(Second Sicily)
Charles II1285-1309
Robert the Wise1309-1343
patron of Boccaccio, Paul
of Perugia, & Greek literature
Joanna I1343-1382
Charles III1382-1386
Charles II
of Hungary
Joanna II1414-1435
Anjevian line ends;
claim to Naples passes to
René the Good of Anjou,
Duke of Lorraine,
but by 1442 Alfonso V of
Aragon conquers the Kingdom
The division between Sicily and the mainland state whose capital was at Naples motivates our modern terminology for the Kingdoms. However, the Anjevians never accepted the legitimacy of the Aragonese Kingdom of Sicily, and they continued to use the traditional name of their Kingdom, which was "Sicily" rather than "Naples." So there were two Kingdoms of Sicily, an accident of nomenclature that later became institutionalized. To Sicilians proper, their Kingdom was La Sicilia di qui del faro, or "Sicily on this side of the lighthouse," meaning the lighthouse on the Sicilian shore of the Straits of Messina, while the mainland Kingdom was La Sicilia di qua del faro, or "Sicily beyond the lighthouse."

Joanna I of Naples willed her domains to Louis I of Anjou. Louis was able to secure Provence, but Naples fell to her cousin Charles III after he murdered Joanna. Later, Joanna II of Naples left her rights to René I the Good of Anjou, but he was unable to hold off Alfonso V of Aragon and Sicily. Both Sicily and Naples are subsequently part of the history of Spain and Austria.
Kings of Sicily & Naples
(First & Second Sicily)
Alfonso V,
I of Naples
Aragon &
(Second Sicily),
Ferdinand I
defeated by Anjevians at Sarno, 1460; Turks occupy Otranto, 1480-1482
John IIAragon &
Alfonso IINaples,
Ferdinand II
Invasion of Italy by Charles VIII of France, French Occupation of Naples, 1495-1496
Frederick IV
(or III)
d. 1504
Ferdinand II,
V of Spain,
III of Naples
Aragon &

By reuniting Sicily and Naples, one would think that Alfonso had undone the duality of there being two "Sicilies." Instead, Alfonso embraced the duality, and the state was now the Regnum utriusque Siciliae, the "Kingdom of the Two Sicilies." This peculiar appellation survived down through its
Bourbon incarnation until 1861.

Alfonso left Naples to his illegitimate son Ferdinand (Ferrante), with the rest of the Aragonese holdings going to his brother, John II. Ferrante had a hard but successful time fighting off the Turks, Anjevians -- now meaning John I (or II), Duke of Lorraine -- and other enemies. Ferrante was helped, as he helped in turn, Skanderbeg, the hero of Albania, who freed his lands from the Turks from 1443 to 1463. If Ferrante was able to capture an enemy, the torments of imprisonment and death might be followed by mummification, so that the King could display him for his amusement. He is said have kept his collection in a museum or even at a banquet table. I know of no precedent for his macabre practice.

According to Andreas Thiele, Ferdinand was einer der grausamsten und barbarischsten Despoten Istaliens überhaupt, "One of the most cruel/horrible and barbaric despots of Italy altogether" [Erzählende genealogische Stammtafeln zur europäischen Geschichte, Volume II, Part 2, Europäiche Kaiser-, Königs- und Fürstenhäuser II Nord-, Ost- und Südeuropa R. G. Fischer Verlag, Part 2, Second Edition, 1997, p.210]. This reputation was irresistable to the producers of the recent Showtime series The Borgias [2011-2012], who nevertheless also could not forebear altering the history to make things worse. Thus while Ferrante was succeeded by his son Alfonso II, who abdicated on the eve of the French invasion of 1495 (and died within the year in Sicily) and was thus succeeded by his young son (aged 26) Ferdinand II, The Borgias skips Alfonso and goes directly to Ferdinand, who is then captured, tortured to death, and mummified, by Charles VIII of France.

However, in fact Ferdinand fled the French, kept his forces together, obtained refuge and help from his cousin, Ferdinand II of Aragón and Sicily (V of Spain), successfully fought his way back into Naples as Charles withdrew, and pursued French forces until they were quit of the Kingdom. The French had been no more popular than they were in Sicily in 1282. Then, after marrying his aunt (who was actually younger than he was), Ferdinand died a natural death. We might also keep in mind that the torture and murder of a fellow Monarch, even if captured in battle -- as happened to John II of France -- is something that was simply not done in Mediaeval Europe. John was feasted in London. If Charles had actually killed Ferdinand in such a way, the outrage of Europe would have been great, and, more to the point, the hosility of the House of Aragón would have been implacable. Aragón was going to be hostile enough, as it happened. It is unlikely that a Monarch like Charles VIII, for all his faults, would be been so gratuitously impolitic.

Before modern television, these Kings had already been fictionalized in a far more memorable work of art, Shakespeare's The Tempest. There we have Alonso (i.e. Alfonso), King of Naples, and his son Ferdinand. While there were indeed two Kings of Naples named "Alfonso" with sons named "Ferdinand," the history and personalities of Shakespeare's Alonso and Ferdinand match up with neither pair of them. Alfonso II was King far to briefly to be anything like King Alonso; and Ferdinand I was very far from being anything like the sweet and innocent Ferdinand of The Tempest. Instead, Alonso is more like Alfonso I, while Ferdinand seems to be much like the young and earnest Ferdinand II. We can just see him marrying Miranda. But Alfonso I had nothing to do with the Ducal succession in Milan, and Ferdinand II did not marry a princess of Milan. However, Ferdinand's father, Alfonso II did marry a princess of Milan, Ippolita Sforza, daughter of Duke Francesco I Sforza. She was Ferdinand's mother. At Milan, also, there was indeed an irregularity in the succession, as in The Tempest, but this was Ippolita's brother, Ludovico Maria, deposing his nephew, Gian Galeazzo, in 1479 -- not the fictional Duke Prospero being deposed by his brother Antonio. Thus, Shakespeare's story is entirely fictional (and the name "Miranda" evidently a novel coinage), with little more than names and places supplied from the history of Naples and Milan. The meaning of The Temptest, in turn, has nothing to do with any of this history or its participants.

In the genealogy above, we see three Aragonese Counts of Malta. The marraige of Count Louis/Luis to a Palaeogina princess is noted at the genealogy of the Palaeologi. Further marriages to Serbia are shown on the popup, where we also see that Helena Cantacuzena and her daughter, the widow Countess of Malta, Maria, were both captured by the Ottoman Sulṭân Bâyezîd, at Salona in 1394, and sent to his harem, where they soon died.

The "Catalan Company," mercenaries from Aragón who had fought for Romania and then mutinied, killed the Duke of Athens and seized the Duchy in 1311. In 1312, a brother of King Peter II of Sicily was brought in to rule. Two more brothers followed. Then King Louis of Sicily took over the Duchy from his uncle John II in 1432, and for a while Athens was united to Sicily. Just as Sicily was about to be reunited to Aragón, Athens was lost to the Acciaiuolis. The genealogy for all this can be examined at Aragón and at Athens.

Frederick IV of Naples was deposed by his cousin Ferdinand II of Aragón, who had already united Spain by marrying Isabella of Castile. Sicily and Naples remained united to Spain until Naples (and Sardinia) was ceded to Austria, and Sicily to Savoy, after the War of the Spanish Succession (1713).

Savoyard King of Sicily
Victor Amadeus IIDuke of Savoy,
King of Sicily,
King of Sardinia,
Bourbon Kings of the Two Sicilies
War of the Polish
Succession, 1733-1735,
Sicily & Naples to
Bourbons, 1735
King of Spain,
Ferdinand I/IV1759-1825
Parthenopean Republic in Naples,
1799; Bourbons restored, 1799;
Bourbons deposed, 1805
Joseph BonaparteNaples,
Joachim MuratNaples,
Bourbons restored in Naples,
1815; Bourbons, deposed 1820,
restored by Austria,
financed by Rothschilds, 1821
Francis I1825-1830
Ferdinand II/V1830-1859
Francis II1859-1860,
d. 1894
Garibaldi defeats Bourbons, 1860;
Sicily & Naples joined to
Sardinia & Italy, 1861
After the War of the Spanish Succession, Spain gave up Sardinia, Sicily, and Naples. Sicily went to
Savoy, Sardinia and Naples to Austria. The Bourbon Philip V of Spain didn't like this arrangement and in 1717 occupied Sardinia and Sicily. After Britain and Austria defeated Spain in 1718, the status quo ante was restored, but in 1720 Savoy traded Sicily for the more conveniently located Sardinia. The Bourbons continued with designs on the Italian territories, and as the result of the War of the Polish Succession, they did get Sicily and Naples, given to a younger son of Philip V, with the provision that the Kingdom, subsequently called (again) the "Kingdom of the Two Sicilies," would not be reunited with Spain. Thus, when Charles of Naples fell heir to the Spainish Throne, he passed the Two Sicilies on to his own younger son Ferdinand.

Sicily and Naples became separated during the Revolutionary Era, when French forces could easily occupy the mainland of Italy but the British Navy prevented them from landing in Sicily. An interesting footnote to that situation is when Admiral Horatio Nelson developed a relationship with Lady Emma Hamilton, wife of the British Ambassador, Sir William Hamilton. Lady Hamilton even bore Nelson a daughter. Nelson's plea that Britain should support this girl in the event of his death, however, was overlooked, despite undying gratitude for his victory and death at Trafalgar in 1805.

An association a bit more intrinsic to the area was the discovery of Pompeii, which had been buried by an eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 AD. In 1710 a local peasant, Giovanni Battista Nocerino, began digging up artifacts at what turned out to be Herculaneum. An Austrian officer, Maurice de Lorraine, Prince d'Elboeuf, learned of the artifacts, bought the land, and excavated it for a while himself. After the Bourbons came to power, excavation was reopened by order of King Charles in 1738. The Museo Borbonico was created just to house the discoveries. In 1745 excavation moved over to the site that proved to be the city of Pompeii proper. In 1748 the first fresco and skeletal victim were discovered. Less edifying discoveries soon followed. By 1758 rumors were circulating of obscene art. King Charles himself ordered a statue of a satyr copulating with a goat (found in 1752) to be kept locked away. By 1786, however, books were being published with references to this and other objects. The "Secret Museum" at Pompeii was soon well stocked with nudes, lucky phalluses, and representations of intercourse and bestiality. Access to the brothels of Pompeii, which were not alone in possessing such embarrassing artifacts, but were particularly rich, as might be imagined, with them, had to be restricted. Thus began both the modern arguments over pornography and over the decadence that brought about the Fall of Rome.

Of particular interest at Herculaneum were the carbonized scrolls of an entire library, in what then came to called the Villa de Papyri. Reading these books was soon attempted, with both successes and failures, and continues to the present day. Many of the works turned out to be those of the Epicurean philosopher Philodemus of Gadara, who is discussed on the page of Hellenistic Philosophy.

It was during this period that the English Ambassador, Sir William Hamilton again, who was in the Kingdom from 1764-1800, studied the volcanoes of Naples and Sicily. His 1774 book, Observations on Mount Vesuvius, Mount Etna, and Other Volcanoes, has been called the beginning of volcanology. Hamilton thus has a claim to fame that is both intrinsic to Naples and Sicily and is rather more important than just his being cuckold to Horatio Nelson.

Restored to Naples in 1815, the Bourbons acquired, or cultivated, the reputation of one of the most reactionary regimes in Europe. When Garibaldi landed an army in Sicily in 1860, Bourbon authority collapsed quickly, and the North and the South of Italy were finally reunited for the first time since the invasion of the Lombards in 568. Nevertheless, the two ends of Italy remain culturally and politically rather different until today.

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Kings of Sardinia, 1720-1861

Kings of Sardinia
Victor Amadeus IIDuke of Savoy,
King of Sicily,
King of Sardinia,
Prince Eugène of Savoy (1663-1736), second cousin of Victor Amadeus II, becomes supreme commander of Imperial Armies, 1697
Charles Emanuel III1730-1773
Victor Amadeus III1773-1796
Charles Emanuel IV1796-1802
Victor Emanuel I1802-1821
Charles Felix1821-1831
Charles Albert1831-1849
Victor Emanuel IIKing of Sardinia,
Savoy & Nice
ceded to
France, 1860
King of Italy,
Victor Amadeus II succeeded in turning Savoy into something approaching a Great Power. He was able to accomplish this mainly through his own diplomatic skills and the genius of his great cousin, Prince Eugène. Beginning his military career with the humiliating experience of being turned down for service by Louis XIV because he was too short, Eugène found the Emperor
Leopold I more receptive. Louis would rue the day for his foolishness.

Eugène's mother was a niece of the Cardinal Mazarin (1602-1661) who succeeded Cardinal Richelieu (d.1642) as the First Minister of King Louis XIII. Mazarin then continued under the Regency of Queen Anna, 1643-1651, and under Louis XIV until the Cardinal's death in 1661, when Louis announced he would rule without such a Minister.

On his arrival in Paris, Mazarin had brought along no less than seven of his nieces, who were then called the Mazarinettes. All of these then grew up with the young Louis XIV, eventually with ambitions to marry him, or at least become an offical mistress. As thin and dark Italians, the nieces were not always thought well of; and their ambitions with Louis were frustrated. Eugène's mother, Olympia, was involved in various Court conspiracies and consequently went into exile in 1680. Meanwhile, her husband, a Prince of Savoy, had died (1673).

From Brussels Olympia landed in Spain, where she did well until accusations of conspiracy again in 1690, when she was obliged to return to Brussels. Although Eugène remined in France through all this, it is hard to say how the problems of his mother influenced his place at Court, where the King regarded him as ugly as well as short, and ordered a clerical career for him. Instead, in 1683 Eugène, having lived his whole life in Paris, decamped for service with the Hapsburgs.

In short order, the 20-year-old Eugène was with the relief Army at the Siege of Vienna, where Louis XIV had helped get the Turks to besiege the city. Eugène distinguished himself in the great attack that broke the siege.

After the Turks were defeated, Imperial forces, with recruits and enthusiasm from all over Europe, began to drive them right out of Hungary, which had been under the Ottomans since 1526. The first great victories in Hungary were won by Charles (V) of Lorraine, Louis of Baden, and Maximilian of Bavaria. Later, Eugène, who had become a general fighting in Italy, was given command of the Imperial Army in Hungary.

Although ordered to keep on the defensive, Eugène attacked and utterly destroyed the Turks at the battle of Zenta (1697), earning fame that would continue well into the next century. On his return to Vienna, however, he was relieved of command for having disobeyed orders. In short order the Emperor thought better of this, but Eugène refused reinstatement unless he would be given a free hand in the future. He was.

This all was bad news for Louis, who tried to help the Turks with his own war; but the War of the League of Augsburg (1688-1697) did not save Hungary for the Sulṭân. Soon, the death of the last Spanish Hapsburg set off the greatest conflict of the Era, the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1713).

Here Eugène, and his friend, John Churchill, the 1st Duke of Marlborough, transformed European warfare from the slow sieges and counter-marches of the previous half century into battles of annihilation. The first meeting of Eugène and Churchill, on the eve of the Battle of Blenheim, must be one of the key moments in military history.
Portrait of Eugène, Prince of Savoy, 1718, Jacob van Schuppen (1670–1751), Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
They immediately discovered that they were of one mind and in absolute sympathy, much as happened when Ulysses S. Grant first met Abraham Lincoln in 1864. Indeed, it was the kind of relationship, the kind of friendship, and the kind of cooperation that we see in William Tecumseh Sherman's words, when he said about Grant, "I stood by him when he was drunk, and he stood by me when I was crazy; now we stand by each other always."

After the great War, Eugène continued to win battles against the Turks, culminating in the defeat of the Turks at Belgrade, and the capture of the city, in 1717. Having found his fortune with Austria, Eugène is buried in Vienna, in the crypt of the Stephansdom Cathedral. His statue stands in the Heldenplatz ("Hero's Plaza") of the Hofburg Palace. His summer palace, overlooking Vienna, the Belvedere, is now a museum -- lately a center of controversy over some stolen paintings of Gustav Klimt.

As Eugène and Churchill inflicted stunning defeats on the French, Victor Amadeus switched to the Imperial side, and Eugène drove the French right out of Italy. As a result, while Spanish possessions in the Mediterranean mostly went to Austria, Savoy obtained Sicily, which of course had been a Kingdom since 1130. So the Duke of Savoy was now a King.

But this arrangement turned out to be awkward. After Spain invaded both Sardinia (1717) and Sicily (1718) and had to be defeated by Britain and Austria, Victor Amadeus traded in Sicily for Sardinia (1720). Now, Sardinia had never been as important as Sicily and had not been a kingdom; but it was promoted to one so that Savoy would not lose status with the trade of Sicily.

In 1814, Savoy also became the ruler of Genoa, which had been an independent, Mediaeval republic until the French Revolution. At this point, we see a flag that is designed to represent the rule of Savoy, Genoa, and Sardinia. The Sardinian flag is simply that of Aragón, of which Sardinia was long a possession, showing four "Moors heads." The first version of this is the flag of Savoy with the "Moors head" flag in one quarter and the Genoese Cross of St. George on the diagonal.

Soon, a more interesting design was developed, containing the three crosses of Savoy, Genoa, and Sardinia. Meanwhile, the flag of Savoy had sometimes been placed in a blue field, or as the canton of a blue flag, apparently in each case to represent the Piedmont. The new multiple cross flag for the Kingdom of Sardinia thus came to be put as the canton of a blue flag also. In 1848, however, this interesting flag was abandoned and replaced with the nationalist tri-color for Italy, representing the goal of Sardinia to unite Italy -- which it did.

The list of Kings of Sardinia is given under the periphery of Francia, because that is really where Sardinia belongs, since it was long a possession of Romania, Islâm, and then Aragón. Its only "Core" association was as a possession of Pisa for a while. This is a little awkward, since Savoy, now as Sardinia, remained a core territory of Francia and, most importantly, would go on to form the nucleus of a new Kingdom of Italy. However, since the new Kingdom would integrate the unambiguously peripheral area of Sicily and Naples, it is worth the emphasis of putting Sardinia there also.

The process of unification would mainly be in antagonism to Austria, which became the dominant power in Italy after Napoleon. Ironically, Prince Eugène is now remembered as a German national hero because of his service to the Empire -- there was even a German heavy cruiser in World War II named the Prinz Eugen (sunk after the War at the Kwajalein atomic bomb test in 1947). But Italians would later have little love for Austria.

The House of Savoy is continued under Kings of Italy.

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