A few may be mentioned here. These officers, like similar officers elsewhere, became the stepping-stones to tyranny, in the hands of the family of Della Torre, the first despots of Milan, who dominated the city during much of the thirteenth century. See Image two Venice Venice, a city built on a group of islands located just off Italy's north-eastern coastline, was another one of Italy's major mercantile powers during the Middle Ages. By 1500 Venice controlled a vast area in northern Italy, and many important cities, formerly independent, were under her rule, including Padua, Verona, and numerous others. The Senate hen chose the Council of Ten, a secretive group which held the utmost power in the administration of the city. The Church and the Renaissance The city of Rome, the papacy, and the Papal States were all affected by the Renaissance.
These men were the Florentines Machiavelli and Guicciardini. Why are some nations stricken by the maladies of poor governance? Some Italian city-states became great military powers very early on. Because of the involvement of the popes in Italian political struggles, enemies of the papacy managed to keep Martin from entering Rome until 1420. This link between town and country was to become stronger and more complex in the course of communal history. For example, Milan produced metal goods and armor.
Some wealthy families gained long-term control; city-states were ruled by a single family, such as the Medicis. He was assisted by Florence, which, under the rule of Cosimo de' Medici, in this way reversed its long-standing anti-Milanese policy. The growing spirit of self-conscious independence can be observed in the history of Milan, the greatest city in Lombardy, which asserted itself against archbishop, pope, and emperor. It was this rivalry that drove Alfonso d'Este to commission the Feast of the Gods for his palace in Ferrara, some 100 miles southwest of Venice. He even secured papal approval, and in 1347 his plot succeeded.
They naturally accepted the former alternative; one of them later became pope. I was able to take several classes in the history, Near Eastern Studies, and religion departments which helped me hone my knowledge base while still maintaining a Politics core. This strife was ferocious in its intensity; in their hatred of their political foes, men behaved like wild animals, going to any extreme of murder, torture, and treachery. He pursued the family policy of territorial aggrandizement with unprecedented success. In central Italy there were the city-states of , , , , , , among others. Early in the fourteenth century the Visconti embarked on the policy of territorial aggression that became characteristic of their house.
The old ruling class might be called the grandi, or great men, while the guildsmen took the name of popolo, that is, the people. Meanwhile a war against Lucca, which was going badly for Florence, was costing so much that the government was forced to suspend payments on its loans, thus deepening the financial crisis. Genoa was a trading center for ivory and gold. Three conspirators, inflamed by their study of the classics with a love for republican liberty, murdered him in church in 1476. To be defeated in a political struggle did not mean getting a minority of the vote and waiting for the next election; it was likely to mean being defeated in a political battle and then, if one escaped with his life, going into exile and conspiring with fellow exiles to seize power from the present victors.
Its wealth, based largely on woolen cloth, was immense. It could be argued that the Renaissance popes constituted a graver danger to the church than would be posed by the Protestant reformers. They were one of the earliest examples of a modern industrial proletariat. The growing prosperity of the Florentine class of merchants and bankers eventually enabled them to take over the government of the city in 1282 83, from an old ruling class, that of the magnates, weakened by its own internal disunity. This was a highly mobile, demographically expanding society, fueled by the rapidly expanding commerce.
Harvard historian points out that Florence and Venice, as well as several other Italian city-states, played a crucial innovative role in world financial developments, devising the main instruments and practices of banking and the emergence of new forms of social and economic organization. Only a small number of the more powerful families, such as the house of Este, the Malaspina, the Guidi, and the Aldobrandeschi, succeeded in maintaining their independence—and that not without frequent losses and. Together, the Ottoman Empire and Venice grew wealthy by facilitating trade: The Venetians had ships and nautical expertise; the Ottomans had access to many of the most valuable goods in the world, especially pepper and grain. Florence became outstanding in banking and woolen manufacture. Italian Politics Italian politics during the time of the Renaissance was dominated by the rising merchant class, especially one family, the House of Medici, whose power in Florence was nearly absolute. This means that the relationships between the Italian cities exhibited the elements of international relations in modern Europe. There was also a large class with no political power whatever, the workers, especially those employed by the wool manufacturers.
At this point Lorenzo undertook perhaps the most spectacular venture of his career. During the Renaissance groups of guild members, called boards, often ruled Italian city-states. During the 1204 , Venice conquered three-eights of the Byzantine Empire. Throughout his pontificate, Alexander worked to help his son Cesare build up a state of his own in central Italy. A popular explanation for the Italian Renaissance is the thesis, first advanced by historian Hans Baron, that the primary impetus of the early Renaissance was the long-running series of wars between Florence and Milan. A few relatively small states, for example Ferrara, Mantua, and Siena, have retained their independent status. Some of these cities were run by elected leaders and others by ruling families.
There are some estimates that the Medici family were the wealthiest family in Europe for a time. Naples The city-state of Naples ruled much of southern Italy at the time of the Renaissance. The prestige that the family had attained can be seen in the marriages of Galeazzo's children, who married into the French and English royal families. In particular, Florence became one of the wealthiest cities in Northern Italy. Venice controlled the seas around the east coast of Italy and was famous for its artistic glassware. Illustration page 58 His powerful features are those of a successful ruler, a famous condottiere, and a lover of art and learning, and the possessor of one of the finest libraries of the time. The civic culture which arose from this was remarkable.
They were not members of any guilds, were forbidden to form guilds of their own, and were the worst sufferers in time of economic depression. People from all over Europe came to northern Italy to buy, sell, and do their banking. The revival of city-states was noticeable by the 11th century, when several Italian towns had reached considerable prosperity. In some city-states you had to be a member of a guild to run for public office. The republic proved unable to protect the city's military interests, and in 1450, Francesco Sforza, a professional soldier, seized control of the government. Prosperous City-States During the late Middle Ages, Northern and Central Italy became far more prosperous than the south of Italy, with the city-states, such as Venice and Genoa, among the wealthiest in Europe.