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Venice, a Medieval Maritime Empire - Myth or Historical Reality?

Jong Kuk Nam 1

1이화여자대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The history of Venice itself is a myth. Numerous historians do not hesitate in labelling Venice as a maritime empire, considering that it made a great expansion of Venetian domain in the Eastern Mediterranean and in the mainland of Italy in the Later Middle Ages. This article aims to review whether the concept of Venice as a maritime empire is only a myth or if Venice had the power and authority fit for an empire. Venice established a kind of maritime empire called Stato da Mar in the Eastern Mediterranean as the Fourth Crusade had come to conquer the Byzantine empire in 1204. Since the late Fourteenth century, Venice made an expansion towards the Italian peninsula and established Stato da Terra. Venice succeeded in maintaining these two foreign territories for some centuries against several great powers including the Ottoman Turks in the Eastern Mediterranean and France, and the Holy Roman empire in Europe. Venice's numerous enemies accused it of aiming toward the empire both on land and on sea. Several aspects considered, the fifteenth century Venice deserves to be called as an empire.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.