Giovanni Dandolo, the doge of Venice, gives instructions to his ambassadors at the court of the Aquileian patriarch [Raymond della Torre], advising them on how to proceed on a number of issues, including the problems surrounding the Venetian jurisdictions in Istria, for which he recommends procuring a lease of the patriarch’s rights in the region.
Nos Iohannes Dandulo Dei gratia Veneciarum, Dalmacie atque Chroacie dux, dominus quarte partis et dimidie tocius Imperii Romanie, committimus vobis nobilibus viris Marino Dauro et Petro Teupulo, fidelibus nostris dilectis, ut in nostros ambaxiatores et nuncios ire debeatis ad venerabilem patrem patriarcham Aquilegensem, quem ex parte nostra salutabitis sicut videbitis condecere ac verba dilectionis et amicicie dicetis eidem que vobis dicenda et utilia videbuntur, cui eciam sive illis quos pro se ad hec constituerita pro parte nostra similiter dicere debeatis quandob et sicut videbitis expedire: quod nobis multe ac graves sunt delate querele ac cotidie deferuntur pocius multiplicantur, quod pacta que inter predecessores nostros duces, nos et Comune Veneciarum ex una parte et predecessores suos patriarchas et eum ex altera fuerunt inita et firmata non observantur nec fuerunt hactenus suo tempore observata, pocius contra iures eorum et formas Venetis et fidelibus nostris sunt novitates facte ac gravamina multa et dampna in daciis et aliis sunt illata et fiunt et inferuntur, quod nobis multum displicet et est grave, et alia penitus circa predicta similiter dicere que vobis dicenda et utilia videbuntur.
Et ecce nos damus vobis in scriptis novitates, gravamina et damna huiusmodi illata et facta contra predicta pacta, et si vos a vicedomino nostro Aquilegie aut ab aliquibus nostris Venetis qui erunt in Foroiulio inveneritis aut petieritis scire de aliis novitatibus, gravaminibus atque dampnis Venetis nostris factis et illatis, facietis addi istis que vobis damus in scriptis.
Verumtamen si de aliquibus predictis novitatibus, gravaminibus et dampnis in scriptis vobis per nos datis aut per vos repertis reperietis aliqua non fore facta vel illata contra predicta pacta, illa dicetis vel tacebitis, sicut discrecioni vestre videbitur convenire.
Insuper dicetis quod licet de observatione ipsorum pactorum et de remocione novitatum et gravaminum et satisfac[t]ionec dampnorum huiusmodi ipse patriarcha pluries rogatus et requisitus fuerit, non tamen fuit adimpletum quod ab eo extitit requisitum, qualiter ex parte nostra rogabitis et requiretis patriarcham eundem, quod dictas novitates et gravamina velit facere removeri et de ipsis dampnis in daciis et aliis illatis et factis facere satisfieri. Et alia omnia circa hec dicetis eidem que vobis dicenda et utilia videbuntur.
Et si per ipsum patriarcham, aut per illos qui fuerint pro eo, fuerit vobis responsum seu dictum quod patriarcha vult predicta pacta servare, removere novitates et gravamina supradicta et facere satisfieri de predictis dampnis illatis, placet nobis et volumus quod reformetis et ratificetis predicta pacta, quorum habebitis publicum instrumentum, cum dicto patriarcha auctoritate sindicatus quem portatis vobiscum, et recipiatis ab eo nomine nostro et Comunis Veneciarum similem reformacionem et ratificacionem ipsorum pactorum et remocionem novitatum et gravaminum et caucionem satisfactionis dampnorum predictorum per publica instrumenta.
Si autem predicta que requiretis de observatione pactorum, remocione novitatum et gravaminum impositorum et de satisfactione dictorum dampnorum aut de aliquibus eorum dictus patriarcha facere noluerit, id et causam qualiter noluerit nobis vestris litteris intimetis, expectando responsum et mandatum nostrum et secundum ea postmodum faciendo.
Preterea dicto patriarche dicere debeatis quod cum quidam nomine Blasius, qui est forbannitus de Triesto, in capitaneum custodes nostros de posta Sancti Iohannis de Tuba cum sequacibus suis insultaverint eosque spoliaverint omnibus bonis suis, dictusque Blasius fuerit detentus in Montefalcone per capitaneum dicti patriarche, nos ab eodem patriarcha ipsum Blasium fecimus postulari, ut placeret ei illum ad nostram presenciam facere destinari. Verum quia hoc non fecit, rogabitis ipsum ut nobis dictum Blasium faciat exhiberi.
Item committimus vobis quod si per dictum patriarcham, aut per illos qui fuerint pro eo, fuerit tale dictum vel tactum quod detineamus terras ipsius patriarche que sunt in Istria aut occupaverimus de iuribus et racionibus eius, poteritis respondere ac dicere quod nullas suas terras aut iura vel raciones ipsius occupavimus nec tenemus occupatas. Verum est quod certe terre de Istria ad suplicacionem et instanciam incolarum et universitatum ipsarum terrarum, que guerris que agebantur inter eos quasi erant ad nihilum iam devente, sub protectione nostra et Comunis Veneciarum fuerunt suscepte, salvis iuribus ipsius patriarche. Et hec et alia poteritis circa hec dicere que vobis dicenda et utilia videbuntur.
Et si fuerit vobis tactum quod dictus patriarcha velit nobis concedered suas raciones et iura que habet in predictis terris vel aliqua earum, perpetuo vel ad tempus, inquiretis que iura et raciones velit nobis concedere et pro quanto ea omnia que voluerit nobis concedere et pro quanto. Et quod inde inquisiveritis et scire poteritis nobis vestris litteris intimetis, expectando responsionem nostram et postea faciendo sicut vobis duxerimus intimandum.
Et si predicta non fuerint vobis tacta, volumus quod vos, sicut et quando vobis videbitur, dicto patriarche, vel cui vobis videbitur, ea tangere et dicere debeatis. Et si fuerit vobis dictum vel responsum quod patriarcha velit nobis concedere dicta iura et raciones, placet nobis quod debeatis inquirere et scire quas rationes et iura et pro quanto velit concedere et dare nobis ec omnia que concedere voluerit nobis et pro quanto. Et quecumque scire inde poteritis per vestras nobis litteras significare curetis, expectando, ut dictum est supra, responsionem nostram et postea inde faciendo sicut vobis duxerimus destinandum.
Preterea omnia negocia nostrorum Venetorum et fidelium de quibus recordacionem habetis et que ad vestram noticiam pervenerint cum prode et honore Veneciarum promovebitis et procurabitis bona fide.
Iurastis proficuum et honorem Veneciarum eundo, redeundo et stando in ista legatione et quod infra XV dies postquam reversi eritis dicetis nobis et nostro Consilio, tam si fueritis interrogati quam non, quecumque pro nostro Comuni vobis utilia videbuntur, et observabitis formas Consiliorum de donis et graciis non recipiendis et de racione facienda et de scripturis curie nostre reddendis.
Data in nostro ducali palatio millesimo ducentesimo octuagesimo, die quarto octubris, none indictionis.
a) ex constituerent corr. A. b) ex qui corr. A. c) sic satisfacione A. d) seq. signum insertionis quod ad seq. partem suas raciones—voluerit nobis concedere indicat.
We, Giovanni Dandolo, by the grace of God Doge of Venice, of Dalmatia and Croatia, Lord of the fourth part and a half of the entire Empire of Romania, commission you, noblemen Marino Dauro and Pietro Tiepolo, our esteemed subjects, to go as our ambassadors and messengers to the venerable father the patriarch of Aquileia, whom you shall greet in our name as you see fit and to whom you shall convey the words of goodwill and friendship that you find appropriate and convenient. Furthermore, in a similar way, when and as you see fit, you must say to him or to those that he assigns to us for this purpose, that many grave complaints have been reported to us and that they are being lodged daily and are ever multiplying; that treaties, entered into and signed between our predecessors the doges, us and the Commune of Venice on one side and his predecessors the patriarchs and himself on the other, are not observed and they have not been observed thus far in his time. Instead, contrary to their rights and pacts, Venetians and our subjects are faced with usurpations, and they have suffered and are suffering many oppressions and damages in fees and other [tributes], a grave matter that displeases us greatly. And you should likewise say other things about the aforesaid that you find appropriate and convenient.
And here we give you in writing [the reports of] these usurpations, oppressions, and damages inflicted and caused contrary to the said treaties. And if you ask around about this or find out from our deputy in Aquileia or from any of our Venetians who have been in Friuli some other usurpations, oppressions, and damages that have been done and inflicted upon our Venetians, you will add them to those that we gave you in writing.
However, if you find out that some of the said usurpations, oppressions, and damages that we gave you in writing, or those that you will have discovered, have not been committed contrary to the said treaties, you will either speak of them or keep silent, according to your discretion.
Moreover, you will say that even though the very patriarch has been asked and called to observe the said treaties and to stop with the usurpations and oppressions and to reimburse these damages many times, what was requested of him was nevertheless not fulfilled. So, in our name, you will ask and demand of the said patriarch, that he takes measures to stop with the aforementioned usurpations and oppressions, and to reimburse the losses incurred from these fees and others that have been charged and imposed. And you may say anything else to him concerning this that you deem appropriate and convenient.
And if the very patriarch or his representatives tell you or respond that the patriarch wants to respect the said treaties, cease with the usurpations and the above said oppressions, and compensate the aforesaid incurred damages, we would be pleased and we want you to renew and ratify the said treaties, of which you will have a valid document, with the said patriarch as our legal representatives by the power of attorney that you carry with you. And in our name and in the name of the Commune of Venice you will receive from him in the form of legal documents similar renewal and ratification of the said treaties and the suspension of usurpations and oppressions and the security against the compensation of the aforesaid damages.
If, however, the patriarch refuses your above-said demands regarding the observation of the treaties, the suspension of usurpations and inflicted oppressions, and the compensation of the said damages, or some of the above, you will recount this to us together with the reason why he refused. Then you are to wait for our answer and our commands and then proceed accordingly.
Furthermore, you must say to the said patriarch, that, since a certain individual by the name of Blaise, who is banished from Trieste, insulted and together with his companions robbed our captain and the guards of the outpost San Giovanni in Tuba of all their belongings, the said Blaise has been detained in Monfalcone by the patriarch’s captain. We asked the same patriarch for the very Blaise if he would be willing to deliver him to us. Since he refused, you will ask him to show us the said Blaise.
Likewise, we commission you that, if the said patriarch or his representatives say or mention that we hold lands in Istria that belong to the patriarch or that we occupy his jurisdictions and properties, you may respond and say that we neither occupied nor do we hold under occupation any of his lands or jurisdictions or properties. The truth is that certain lands of Istria – that appeared to have already been reduced to nothing by the wars fought between them – were accepted under our protection and the protection of the Commune of Venice at the supplication and instigation of the inhabitants and the collectives of these lands, without infringing on the rights of the very patriarch. And you may say this and other things regarding this matter that you deem appropriate and convenient.
And if it would be mentioned to you that the said patriarch would be willing to concede his properties and the rights that he owns in the above said lands, or some of them, perpetually or for a time, you will inquire what rights and properties he would be willing to concede to us, and for how long he would be willing to concede all of this to us, and for what price. And once you make these inquiries and find out all that you can, you will relate this to us in a letter. Then you are to wait for our response and afterwards proceed as we direct you.
And if the above said is not mentioned to you, we want that you, when and how you see fit, mention and say this to the said patriarch or to whom you deem appropriate. And if they tell you and respond that the patriarch would be willing to concede to us the said rights and properties, we would like you to inquire and find out what properties and rights, and for how long he would be willing to concede and to give to us all that he is willing to concede to us, and for what price. And whatever you find out about this you will make sure to inform us about it in your letters to us. You are then to wait for our response, as was said above, and afterwards proceed as we direct you.
Moreover, all the affairs of our Venetians and subjects that you witness and that come to your attention you will conduct and attend to in good faith and for the profit and honor of Venice.
You swore to go, return, and remain on this mission for the profit and honor of Venice and that within fifteen days upon your return you would relate to us and our Council, whether you would be interrogated or not, everything that you deemed useful to our Commune.
And you will obey the rules of our councils on not accepting gifts or favors, and on accountability, and on delivering the writings to our chancellery.
Given in our ducal palace in 1280, on the 4th day of October, the 9th indiction.
[translation from Banić, Barmecidal Margraviate, pp. 99–102]
Marino Coppo’s note to Venetian ambassadors, listing the demands of the Aquileian patriarch in exchange for the lease of his Istrian jurisdictions for a period of twenty-nine years – edited here as doc. 1280_MC.
The ducal instructions to Marino Dauro and Pietro Tiepolo reveal a number of contentions plaguing the relations between Venice and the Patriarchate of Aquileia in the late 13th century. First, the pacts signed with Patriarch Raymond in 1275 (to be edited here presently) had not been upheld. Then there were the undefined “crimes against the Venetians” in the Patriarchate of Aquileia and the question of the consignment of a certain “Blaise” who was held in Monfalcone after having been banished from Trieste. The most pressing matter, however, were the jurisdictions in Istria, namely the six towns and cities that now recognized Venetian authority following their subjections to the Commune Venciarum – Poreč, Umag, Novigrad, Sveti Lovreč, Izola and Koper. Venice was still unsure how to proceed regarding this matter. Thus, Doge Dandolo advised that his ambassadors try to lease the patriarch’s rights over Istria, either the entire jurisdictional region or only the part currently recognizing Venetian iurisdictio. The ambassadors were therefore asked to enquire about the conditions of this potential lease. The patriarch responded shortly thereafter, presenting the ambassadors with both the list of his rights that were offered for lease and the demands that he would ask in return (both documents are edited here, the catalog of rights as doc. 1280_IURA, the demands as doc. 1280_MC). Since both the list of rights and the set of demands are originally undated, these ducal instructions are the “smoking gun” that reveals the date of their original drafting.
The lease was never negotiated and the two parties went to war against each other in 1283. The peace treaties that followed, the first in 1285 (edited here as doc. 1285_PAV) and the second in 1291 (edited here as doc. 1291_PT) merely recognized the status quo and left the issue of Venetian jurisdiction in Istria in the hands of the pope, the consensually nominated judge arbitrator in the dispute. The pope, however, never pronounced his verdict and the two parties finally settled the dispute in 1300 when the patriarch leased the jurisdiction over the Venetian-controlled lands in Istria to the Commune of Venice in exchange for an annual payment of 450 silver marks (document soon to be edited here as well).
The publication of the facsimile of A (Venice, Archivio di Stato di Venezia, Miscellanea ducali e atti diplomatici, busta 9, fasc. A, doc. 6) 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.
The digital facsimile remains under the exclusive copyright of Archivio di Stato di Venezia.