• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

"The Venetian Empire was Essentially a Commercial Enterprise. Like all Good Businesses it Survived and Prospered by Changing With the Times." In What Ways and How Successfully did Venice Change With the Times During the Three Centuries After 1200?

Extracts from this document...


J.C. Douglas-Hughes "The Venetian Empire was Essentially a Commercial Enterprise. Like all Good Businesses it Survived and Prospered by Changing With the Times." In What Ways and How Successfully did Venice Change With the Times During the Three Centuries After 1200? Before 1400 Venice was ruled by trade. Her naval superiority allowed her the opportunity not only to protect her trade routes but also to disrupt her enemies'. It was due to this supremacy that Venice was commissioned to provide a fleet for transport for the 4th crusade. Venetian naval dominance arose after the battle of Ascolon, from this the Venetians were able to gain an overwhelming amount of riches. The sea supremacy enabled the Venetians to plunder merchant ships. Venice had also been granted certain trading privileges by the Greek or Byzantine Empire who had given these in return for the Venetian support against the Normans. However when a new Emperor took over in Byzantine, he failed to renew the Venetian trading privileges. This caused the Venetian fleet to carry out raids on Greek islands, which eventually persuaded the new Emperor to renew the privileges. ...read more.


This was accompanied by a promise from Alexius that when he was in power he would provide at least an army of ten thousand Greeks for the crusade. Venice benefited enormously from these ventures, since it was to them that all the plunder of the wars had been sent. As a result Venice was able to further strengthen their navy and their influence over the Adriatic. However Venice's supremacy did not go unchallenged. Their largest threat occurred in the form of Genoa. The Genoese had also benefited enormously, perhaps even more than the Venetians (who were delayed by their concern for Romania). Before 1250 Pisa had distracted both Genoa and Venice from each other. However in 1250 Venice lost interest in Pisa and began to realise the true extent of the competition that Genoa provided. The first war between the two rivals occurred after a small incident, a Venetian killed a Genoan and the situation escalated to the point of war. The war occurred around Acre and the Venetian fleet was sent, in support of a trading caravan, in order to deal with the Genoese. ...read more.


The reason for this is that during the mid-twelfth century, a body of nobles who originally advised the Doge were suddenly in competition with him. They became known as the Commune. However the essential structure of the hierarchy of Venice did not change hugely. It was in 1172 when Doge Vitel II Michiel returned with the fleet from Byzantium with not plunder but pestilence. He had gone against the advice of his councillors and faced a General Assembly so harsh that he was forced to flee, he was later assassinated. The next Doges made sure that they did not make the same mistakes again. Venice soon became a Republic, as they progressed they became astoundingly advanced in their democratic policy. Each Doge was elected and it was a far different hierarchy from the absolutism which was present in most of western Europe. Indeed the Doges power soon became so limited that there were certain councils who held more judicious power than he did. It was due to such unity and common goals that Venice was able to survive against Genoa. It differed from other governments in that there existed far less faction and corruption, and the state was able to effectively represent its people fairly. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level The Merchant of Venice section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level The Merchant of Venice essays

  1. To what extent was the Third Crusade a defeat for the Latins?

    hands and pilgrims would be allowed to freely visit the Holy Land. Furthermore, after the treat it was allowed by Saladin that two Latin priests and two deacons could serve the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem and at Bethlehem and Nazareth.

  2. How successfully did the Labour governments of 1945-51 solve the social problems of the ...

    It soon became clear, however, that the original acts were insufficient: in 1949, 48% of pensioners applied for National Assistance. "This dependency of National Insurance benefits on means-tested assistance" compromised "the principle of universality and of benefits paid as of right," and so limits the success of the Labour government.

  1. The First English Civil War

    In the meantime the army of Essex had been inactive. After the fall of Reading, a serious epidemic of sickness had reduced it to impotence. On 18 June, the Parliamentary cavalry was routed, and John Hampden mortally wounded at Chalgrove Field near Chiselhampton.

  2. To what extent had the Russian economy been successfully modernised by 1914?

    Consequently, there was no fundamental change in yield and in 1878 only 50% of allotments made a surplus, and the peasants were reduced to a hand to mouth existence. Moreover, often the land was given to the commune and not individual peasants, and the commune was then responsible for distributing the land between the peasants.

  1. To What Extent was World War Two the Key Turning Point in Britain's Relationship ...

    These changes in international relations led to Britain being put under pressure to decolonise. The USSR objected to the Empire on ideological grounds, believing that Imperialist policy conflicted with their own Communist views. The USA was also anti-imperialist. They objected to the Empire because they many of those under British

  2. How and why did the Bolsheviks gain power in 1917?

    Kerensky wanted Kornilov to resign, but on the 27th of August, after being asked to resign by Kerensky, Kornilov ordered his troops to advance and seize the capital. The Bolsheviks were at great threat of being attacked by Kornilov's men, and began merging with the Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries to

  1. To what extent did the Boer War mark the decisive change in Britain's control ...

    and effort that had to be put into the war shows Britain's weaknesses and suggested that it might one day be possible to defeat the British. However, even after the war, Britain's empire remained strong. While the attitudes of some British people had changed, the majority either still supported or had no strong feelings about the empire.

  2. The Changing Nature of Warfare - Napoleon

    The Revolutionary Army, 1792 One evident advantage that the Revolution Army of 1792 had was having Napoleon as one of their notable commanders.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work