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The Provveditore Generale of the islands of the Levant

After the peace of Passarowitz , the most prestigious post that a Venetian could occupy in the Levant was the position of Provveditore Generale  of the Ionian islands . The role of Provveditore combined civilian and military authority, even if the frequent passing of laws was often contradictory, and involved unresolved jurisdiction conflicts with Provveditori that Venice sent to rule individual islands. These conflicts meant that the general's authority in civilian and penal matters was never clearly defined, nor were their extension of powers in general. In moments of special tension, the Provveditore 'ordinario'  might be joined by an 'extraordinario'  who was provided with more specific definite powers of control and intervention. This was the case of Nicolò Erizzo, who in 1787 was assigned the task of revising the civic councils  of Cephalonia  and Zante .

The prestige of the Provveditore Generale  began to wane in the 1770s. At the conclusion of his mandate (1776-1779), Giacomo Nani wrote an anonymous treatise on the Venetian government in the Ionian islands , in which he deplored the decline of the role, overwhelmed by the prevalence of favouritism and continual interruptions in the different ruling functions.

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Viaggio virtuale tra le fonti storiche veneziane
Rotta: Venezia e il Levante (sec XV - sec XVIII)
© 1996 by the VENIVA consortium