The Venetians, who contracted for the transport of the crusaders, and whose blind doge Dandolo was first to land in Constantinople, received one-half and onefourth of the divided Greek empire for their spoils.
During the earlier days of the republic the doge had been a prince elected by the people, and answerable only to the popular assemblies.
The several steps whereby the members of the grand council succeeded in eliminating the people from a share in the government, and reducing the doge to the position of their ornamental representative, cannot here be described.
Equally extensive, but less important in the political sphere, were the Papal States and Veneti, the former torpid under the obscurantist rule of pope and cardinals, the latter enervated by luxury and the policy of unmanly complaisance long pursued by doge and council.
The French emperor, at the supposed request of the doge of Genoa, declared the Ligurian Republic to be an integral part of the French empire.
The present cathedral contains several early Christian marble sarcophagi, a silver cross of the 6th century (that of Agnellus), and the so-called throne of the Archbishop Maximian (54655 2), adorned with reliefs in ivory, which, however, was really brought to Ravenna in iooi by John the Deacon, who recorded the fact in his Venetian chronicle, as a present from the Doge Pietro Orseolo to the Emperor Otho III.
The latter event is proved by a Latin address (of no particular merit) to the Doge and Senate entitled Oratio J.
In 1759 appeared his Doge de Gournay.
The Genoese republic a little earlier underwent at his hand changes which made its doge all-powerful in local affairs, but a mere puppet in the hands of Bonaparte.
The church of St Mark's, originally the private chapel of the doge, is unique among the buildings of the world in respect of its unparalleled richness of material and decoration.
This church was burned in 976 along with the ducal palace in the insurrection against the Doge Candiano IV.
About the year 1063 the Doge Contarini resolved to remodel St Mark's.
In the centre of this gallery stand the four colossal bronze horses which belonged to some Graeco-Roman triumphal quadriga, and were brought to Venice by the Doge Enrico Dandolo after the fall of Constantinople in 1204; they were carried off by Napoleon to Paris in 1797, and restored by Francis of Austria in 1815.
The Doge Domenico Selvo began the decoration of the church in 1071, though it is uncertain whether any of his work can be now identified.
It 'was ordered in 976 at Constantinople by the Doge Pietro I.
The first enlargement of the square was effected by Doge Sebastiano Ziani in 1176, when he filled up the canal and rebuilt the church on a new site at D, thus nearly doubling the size of the square.
Soon after the concentration The at Rialto the doge Angelo Particiaco began an official residence for the head of the state.
The palace as we now see it was begun about 1300 by Doge Pietro Gradenigo, who soon after the closing of the great council gave its permanent form to the Venetian constitution.
The block of buildings in the interior, connecting the Porta della Carta to the Rio wing, was added about 1462 by the doge Cristoforo Moro.
Calendario was an accomplice in the conspiracy of Marino Faliero, and was executed together with the doge in 1355.
These great monoliths were brought as trophies to Venice by Doge Domenico Michieli in 1126, after his victories in Syria.
The grey column is surmounted by a fine bronze lion of Byzantine style, cast in Venice for Doge Ziani about 1178 (this was carried off to Paris by Napoleon in 1797, and sent back in pieces in 1816; but in 1893 it was put together again); and in 1329 a marble statue of St Theodore, standing upon a crocodile, was placed on the other column.
To this they agreed, and in 697 Venice elected her first doge, Paulo Lucio Anafesto.
The aristocratic party was captained by the township of Heraclea, which had given the first doge, Anafesto, to the newly formed community.
He did so, and expelled the exarch Paul, who took refuge in Venice and was restored to his post by the doge of the Heraclean or Byzantine party, Orso, who in return for this assistance received the imperial title of hypatos, and trading rights in Ravenna.
The Byzantine Doge Giovanni Galbaio attacked Grado, the see of the Francophil Patriarch Giovanni, captured it, and flung the bishop from the tower of his palace.
He and his followers plotted the murder of the doge, were discovered, and sought safety at the court of Charlemagne, where Fortunatus strongly urged the Franks to attack the lagoons.
The period from the election of the first doge to the appearance of the Franks was characterized by fierce struggles between Heraclea and Jesolo.
The first doge elected in Rialto was Angelo Particiaco, a Heraclean noble, with a strong bias towards Byzantium, and his reign was signalized by the building of the first church of San Marco, and by the translation of the saint's body from Alexandria, as though to affirm and to symbolize the creation of united Venice.
The history of Venice during the next two hundred years is marked externally by the growth of the city, thanks to an ever-expanding trade, both down the Adriatic, which brought the republic into collision with the Dalmatian pirates and led to their final conquest, in 1000, by the doge Pietro Orseolo II., and also on the mainland, where Venice gradually acquired trading rights, partly by imperial diploma, partly by the establishment and the supply of markets on the mainland rivers, the Sile and the Brenta.
The doge assumed the title of duke of Dalmatia, and a great step was taken towards the supremacy of Venice in the Adriatic, which was essential to the free development of her commerce and also enabled her to reap the pecuniary advantages to be derived from the Crusades.
To achieve their object, a double line of conduct was imposed upon them: they had to absorb the powers of the doge, and also to deprive the people of the voice they possessed in the management of state affairs by their presence in the concione or general assembly of the whole community, which was still the fountain of all authority.
The first step towards curtailing the power of the doge was taken in 1032, when the family of the Orseoli was finally expelled from Venice and the doge Domenico Flabianico was called to the throne.
A law was then passed forbidding for the future the election of a doge-consort, a device by which the Particiachi, the Candiani and the Orseoli had each of them nearly succeeded in carrying out their dynastic ambitions.
Further, two ducal councillors were appointed to assist the doge, and he was compelled, not merely permitted, to seek the advice of the more prominent citizens at moments of crisis.
The doge Vitale Michiel II.
As the duties of this council were to appoint all officers of state, including the doge, it is clear that by its creation the aristocracy had considerably curtailed the powers of the people, who had hitherto elected the doge in general assembly; and at the creation of Michiel's successor, Sebastiano Ziani (1172), the new doge was presented to the people merely for confirmation, not for election.
The assembly protested, but was appeased by the empty formula, "This is your doge an it please you."
Moreover, still further tq limit the power of the doge, the number of ducal councillors was raised from two to six.
In 1198, on the election of Enrico Dandolo, the aristocracy carried their policy one step farther, and by the promissione ducale, or coronation oath, which every doge was required to swear, they acquired a powerful weapon for the suppression of all that remained of ancient ducal authority.
The doge Dandolo now saw an opportunity to benefit Venice.
This policy took definite shape in 1297, when the Doge Pietro Gradenigo proposed and carried the following measure: the supreme court, the Quarantia, was called upon to ballot, one by one, the names of all who for the last four years had held a seat in the great council created in 1171.
They were met by the Doge Pietro Gradenigo and crushed.
At the apex of the pyramid came the doge and his council, the point of highest honour and least weight in the constitution.
The fourth Turkish war (1570-1573) was signalized by the glorious victory of Lepanto (1571), due chiefly to the prowess of the Venetians under their doge Sebastian Venier.
The government resolved to offer no resistance to the conqueror, and the doge Lodovico Manin abdicated on the 12th of May 1797.
An agreement was made between the doge and the envoys, by which transport and active help were to be given by Venice in return for 85,000 marks and the cession of half of the conquests made by the crusaders.
Venice had her own reward; a Venetian, Thomas Morosini, became patriarch; and the doge of Venice added "a quarter and a half" of the Eastern empire - chiefly the coasts and the islands - to the sphere of his sway.
After two weeks he left, having received the blessing of Pope Adrian VI., and proceeded by Padua to Venice, where he begged his bread and slept in the Piazza di San Marco until a rich Spaniard gave him shelter and obtained an order from the doge for a passage in a pilgrim ship bound for Cyprus, whence he could get to Jaffa.
It is not worth while to refer to all the wild guesses that were made by various writers, but Dr Creighton shows the absurdity of one of these calculations made in 1554 by Soranzo, the Venetian ambassador for the information of the doge and senators of Venice.