Tag Archives: Italy

The Siege of Florence in 1312, according to Giovanni Villani

One episode in the continuous warfare between the Holy Roman Empire, the Papacy and the Italian city-states was the siege of Florence by the forces of Emperor Henry VII in 1312. This account of the siege was recorded by the Florentine historian Giovanni Villani (d.1348) Continue reading

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Warfare between Bologna and Faenza in 1275

Salimbene de Adam, a Franciscan, produced his Chronicle in the 1280s. He left one of the most interesting and wide-ranging histories of the Middle Ages, in which he covers a variety of matters, from the political maneuvers of the Italian city-states to the practical jokes that his fellow monks played upon each other. Continue reading

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Turkish Raids in Friuli at the End of the Fifteenth Century

Turkish Raids in Friuli at the End of the Fifteenth Century By Maria Pia Pedani Acta Viennensia Ottomanica, edited by Markus Kohbach, Gisela Prochaska-Eisl, and Claudia Romer (Vienna: Im Selbrstverlag des Instituts fur Orientalistik, 1999) Acta Viennensia Ottomanica is collection of … Continue reading

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Frederick II and the Rebellion of the Muslims of Sicily, 1200-1224

Frederick II and the Rebellion of the Muslims of Sicily, 1200-1224 By James M. Powell Uluslararasi Hacli Seferleri Sempozyumu (1999) In 1999 the Turkish Historical Society/Turk Tarifrh Kurumu published this volume which is devoted to the Crusades in the medieval Middle … Continue reading

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From ‘Milites Christi’ to ‘Mali Christiani’: The Italian Communes in Western Historical Literature

From ‘Milites Christi’ to ‘Mali Christiani’: The Italian Communes in Western Historical Literature By Sylvia Schein I Comuni Italiani nel Regno Crociato di Gerusalemme / The Italian communes in the Crusading Kingdom of Jerusalem, edited by Gabriella Airaldi and Benjamin … Continue reading

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Caste, Skill, and Training: The Evolution of Cohesion in European Armies from the Middle Ages to the Sixteenth Century

Caste, Skill, and Training: The Evolution of Cohesion in European Armies from the Middle Ages to the Sixteenth Century Dennis E. Showalter The Journal of Military History: vol. 57 (1993) Abstract The Middle Ages were characterized by growing institutional sophistication, … Continue reading

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The Military Revolutions of the Hundred Years’ War

The Military Revolutions of the Hundred Years’ War Clifford J. Rogers The Journal of Military History: v.57 (1993) The Military Revolution The concept of the “military revolution” first entered the historical literature with Michael Roberts’s famous inaugural lecture, “The Military … Continue reading

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The recruitment of armies in the early middle ages: what can we know?

The recruitment of armies in the early middle ages: what can we know? Timothy Reuter Military Aspects of Scandinavian Society in a European Perspective, AD 1-1300 (Copenhagen, 1997) Abstract The study of medieval warfare has probably both benefitted and suffered from … Continue reading

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Urban Castles in Medieval Siena: The Sources and Images of Power

Urban Castles in Medieval Siena: The Sources and Images of Power Edward D. English The Medieval Castle: Romance and Reality, ed. Kathryn Reyerson and Faye Powe (Medieval Studies in Minnesota, 1984) The legal, economic, archeological, political, social, architectural, demographic, institutional, … Continue reading

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The Crusading Motivation of the Italian City Republics in the Latin East, c. 1096-1104

The Crusading Motivation of the Italian City Republics in the Latin East, c. 1096-1104 Christopher J. Marshall Rivista di Bizantinistica v.1 (1991) Throughout the 200 years of its existence, the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem was heavily reliant upon the Italian city … Continue reading

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L’assedio di Ficarolo (maggio-giugno 1482) – [The Siege of Ficarolo (May-June 1482)]

L’assedio di Ficarolo (maggio-giugno 1482) – [The Siege of Ficarolo (May-June 1482)] By Sergio Mantovani Tra terra acqua e terra – Storia materiale in Transpadana (2001) Nel giugno 1480 il duca Ercole I d’Este, informando Giovanni Bentivoglio dei tentativi di Venezia e … Continue reading

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The Militarisation of Roman Society, 400 – 700

The Militarisation of Roman Society, 400 – 700 Edward James (University of Reading) Military Aspects of Scandinavian Society in a European Perspective AD 1 – 1300  Historians and archaeologists have lavished attention on the new kingdoms established by various barbarian … Continue reading

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The Career of Robert Guiscard, according to the Annales Lupi Protospatharii

Robert Guiscard was one of several brothers who came to Italy from Normandy to work as mercenaries and gain their fortune. After arriving in Italy in 1046, he served in several campaigns before taking the place of his brother Humphrey … Continue reading

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The Origin of the Second Crusade

The Origin of the Second Crusade George Ferzoco The Second Crusade and the Cistercians (1992) In seeking to establish the formal origin of the Second Crusade, one finds that in Vetralla on December 1,1145, Pope Eugenius III issued the crusading … Continue reading

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Horses and Crossbows: Two Important Warfare Advantages of the Teutonic Order in Prussia

Horses and Crossbows: Two Important Warfare Advantages of the Teutonic Order in Prussia Sven Ekdahl The Military Orders, Volume 2: Welfare and Warfare (1998) The thirteenth-century conquest of Livonia and Prussia by the Order of the Swordbrothers and its successor, … Continue reading

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Foundations of Venetian Naval Strategy from Pietro II Orseoto to the Battle of Zoncho, 1000-1500

 Foundations of Venetian Naval Strategy from Pietro II Orseoto to the Battle of Zoncho, 1000-1500 John E. Dotson Viator: Medieval and Renaissance Studies v.32 (2001) For Venetians during the Middle Ages the sea was life. The prosperity, the very existence, … Continue reading

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Machiavelli’s Art of War: A Reconsideration

Machiavelli’s Art of War: A Reconsideration Marcia L. Colish Renaissance Quarterly: v.51 (1998) Among  Niccolo Machiavelli’s works, the Art of War (published 1521) has received comparatively little scholarly attention. Students of Renaissance literature, finding its theme otiose, content themselves with … Continue reading

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Italy and the companies of adventure in the fourteenth century

Italy and the companies of adventure in the fourteenth century William Caferro The Historian: Vol.58 (1996) Abstract A multitude of villains of various nations associated in arms by the greed to appropriate the fruits of labor of innocent and unarmed … Continue reading

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A Norman-Italian Adventurer in the East: Richard of Salerno, 1097-1112

A Norman-Italian Adventurer in the East: Richard of Salerno, 1097-1112 George T. Beech Anglo-Norman Studies: v.15 (1993) Abstract The adventures, hardships, and disappointments awaiting the Europeans who went on the crusades have long been well known; indeed enough information has … Continue reading

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Fleet Operations in the First Genoese-Venetian War, 1264-1266

Fleet Operations in the First Genoese-Venetian War, 1264-1266 John E. Dotson Viator: Medieval and Renaissance Studies v. 30 (1999) This brief article is not intended to review the history of the First Genoese-Venetian War over its whole length from 1257 … Continue reading

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Saracen Archers in Southern Italy

Saracen Archers in Southern Italy De Re Militari, June (2001) Giovanni Amatuccio During the first phase of their Southern Italian conquest, the Normans included archers in their troops; but such usage seems to have been sporadic and simple. The tactic … Continue reading

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Byzantine conquest of Italy in the Sixth-Century, according to the Chronicle of Marcellinus

In this anonymous addition to the Chronicle of Marcellinus Comes, the events from 534 to 547 are described, with much of the text devoted to the conquest of Italy by the Byzantine general Belisarius. Continue reading

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Alessandro Beneditti, The Battle of Fornovo (1495)

Charles VIII, attempting to seize control of southern Italy for use as a platform for war against the Ottoman Turks, lead the most powerful army in Europe at that time down through Italy, defeating one Italian province after another. Continue reading

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Christofordo da Soldo, Battle of Caravaggio (1448)

The following is an account of the battle of Caravaggio, fought on September 15,1448, in which the Milanese army led by Francesco Sforza defeated the Venetians under Michele Attendolo.  The text is from the Chronicle of Cristoforo da Soldo. Alli … Continue reading

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Dino Compagni, Battle of Campaldino (1289)

Dino Compagni was a prominent silk merchant and an active member of the Florentine government until 1301.  His chronicle, which deals mostly with the internal turmoil of Florence, contains an account of a battle between Arezzo and Florence in 1289. … Continue reading

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Boncompagno da Signa, The History of the Siege of Ancona (1173)

Boncompagno da Signa (1168?-1240?) was an important Italian scholar who wrote several treatises and other works as he moved around between cities such as Ancona, Bologna and Venice.  His account of the siege of Ancona, which he wrote around 1201, … Continue reading

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Chronicle of Ahimaaz, The Arab invasions of Southern Italy

The Chronicle of Ahimaaz is an epic genealogical work composed in Southern Italy in 1054 by Ahimaaz ben Paltiel.  Although it  intended merely to glorify his own immediate ancestors, this work gives much important information in regard to the history … Continue reading

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