Genoa & the Genoese, 958-1528

By Steven A. Epstein | Go to book overview

1
From Practically Nothing to Something, 958-1154

At the beginning there was the land and the sea, and whatever Genoa was to become, it would owe to its position on the shore at a spot where systems of transport must change. With the northwestern stretch of the Apennines descending steeply to the sea, the most remarkable feature of the land is how little flat space exists (see Map 2). Stunning rugged cliffs and rocky beaches have entranced generations of travelers to the Rivieras -- the Levante to the east and the Ponente to the west. It was never easy to live off poor mountain soils with the few flat areas revealingly named islands, places of refuge in a sea of stone. These mountains have a narrow watershed facing the sea; to the north, east, and west, what water there was tended to find its way into the great Po valley to the north. Torrents or creeks, the Bisagno to the east of Genoa and to the west the Polcevera, were unnavigable and were not always reliable sources of fresh water. Genoa was at the mouth of nothing

-9-

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Genoa & the Genoese, 958-1528
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page ii
  • Contents vii
  • Tables ix
  • Figures & Maps xi
  • Preface xiii
  • Acknowledgments xix
  • Genoa & the Genoese, 958-1528 1
  • 1 - From Practically Nothing to Something, 958-1154 9
  • 2 - The Takeoff, 1154-1204 54
  • 3 - Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, 1204-1257 96
  • 4 - Captains of the People, 1257-1311 140
  • 5 - Long Live the People, the Merchants, & the Doge, 1311-1370 188
  • 6 - Liberty and Humanism: Slavery and the Bank, 1370-1435 228
  • 7 - To Throw Away a Thousand Worlds, 1436-1528 271
  • Epilogue 319
  • Appendix - Genoese Revolts and Changes in Government, 1257-1528 325
  • Notes 329
  • Bibliography 369
  • Index 383
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