In the name of Patriarch-margrave Berthold V of Andechs, John de Riva, the general gastald in Istria, orders a Nicholas de Roço of Poreč and all his supporters to present themselves in front of the patriarch in Friuli and to respond to allegations raised against them by a Marino de Mengoso of Poreč and his supporters.
In nomine Domini ęterni.
Anno Domini millesimo CCo XXXo secundo, indictione V, die iovis XV intrante mensis aprilis.
Actum Parentii in platea ante ecclesiam Sancti Georgii, in presencia horum, videlicet domini A[dalperti] episcopi Parentini, presbiteri Warnerii, Nasinvere de Pola, Papolini de Iustinopoli, Petri de Rolando et aliorum plurium.
Iohannes de Rivo generalis gastaldio domini patriarche marchionis in Ystria auctoritate domini patriarche marchionis et cum consensu et voluntate W(o)l(rici) et A(n)d(ree)a iudicum precepit Nicolao de Roço de Parentia et omnibus de parte eius ut debeant venire coram domino patriarcha in Aquilegia vel in Civitate Austria vel alibi ubicumque ęssętb in Foroiulii, et constituit eis terminum ad proximum dominicum venturum ad XV dies ad respondendum Marino de Mengoso de Parentio et illis de parte eius si aliquid voluerint contra eos proponere, et ad respondendum domino patriarche marchioni super omnibus cappitullisb illis quod erant eis datum in primo termino, silicet in octava Pasce, et in omnibus et per omnia sicut continetur in puplicob instrumento confecto per manum mei presentis Symonis notarii, tam in penis quam in aliis cappitullis ab inicio usque in finem prenominati instrumenti.
(SN) Ego Symon domini Be[rtoldi] Aquilegensis sedis patriarche Ystrie inclitis marchionis notarius interfui, rogatus scripsi et puplicavi.
a) Wolrici et Andree] Wl et Ad cum sign. abbr.; Wolricus et Andrea coni. Banić. b) sic A.
This is the first mention of the official dubbed “generalis gastaldio” in Aquileian Margraviate of Istria. This official is mentioned just one more time, in a document issued by the same notary on the same day (see it edited here) before disappearing from historical sources.
It was already Lenel (cited above) who argued that the general gastald is a prototype from which the future richtarius and later marchio would develop, all essentially only different names for one and the same official who acted on a regional scale, supervised the administration of local gastalds, and acted as the patriarch’s chief deputy in the Margraviate. This opinion was then followed by De Vergottini (cited above) and it remains accepted to this day.
Paschini (cited above) argued that the appearance of the general gastald precisely in April of 1232, only two months after Emperor Frederick II’s promulgation of a privilege confirming Patriarch Berthold’s rights over the communes of Istria (soon to be edited here) and during the period of imperial retinue’s stay in the region, is not coincidental at all. Namely, as per Paschini, Berthold rode the wave of imperial support to usher in a new era of his dominance over Istrian communes and the “general gastald” was one of the tools used to achieve that goal.
Be that as it may, the document in question demonstrates that the general gastald was sent to Poreč to summon two parties – one led by Nicholas de Roço (this document) and the other by Marino de Mengoso (see the document here) – two appear in front of the patriarch in Friuli and to respond to each other’s accusations. Thus, it seems that there had been some factional strife in the Commune of Poreč and that the patriarch intervened as the territorial lord. A regestum from late 14th-century Thesauri claritas most certainly refers to this situation: “Item instrumentum pacis facte per dominum patriarcham Pertoldum inter homines de Parentio, MCCXXXI.” If the date of 1231 is correct then the general gastald’s intervention of April 1232 is but an aftermath of Patriarch Berthold’s earlier intervention and pacification. If, however, the date copied in Thesauri claritas is wrong (and this is not uncommon at all), then Berthold’s peace most probably took place after the pacification of Nicholas de Roço and Marino de Mengoso. In any case, no document recording any further details regarding Nicholas’ and Marino’s story or its resolution survives.
The publication of the facsimile of A (Venice, Archivio di Stato di Venezia, Miscellanea atti diplomatici e privati, busta 2, document number 98) is granted free of charge by Archivio di Stato di Venezia by way of the “simplified procedure” of publishing archival facsimiles (La circolare della Direzione generale archivi n. 39 del 29 settembre 2017: procedura semplificata: pubblicazioni online che perseguano finalità scientifiche o pedagogiche, non beneficino di inserzioni pubblicitarie o commerciali e non siano soggette ad accesso a pagamento).
Photo by the editor (who apologizes for the poor quality and hopes to eventually replace this blurry pic with a better one).
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