Provveditore

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The Italian title prov[v]editore (plural provveditori; in Greek προνοητής or προβλεπτής), "he who sees to things", was the style of various (but not all) local district governors in the extensive, mainly maritime empire of the Republic of Venice. Like many political appointments, it was often held by noblemen as a stage in their career, usually for a few years.

Adriatic home territory[edit]

  • In the Stato di Terraferma, the continental part of northern Italy acquired by Venice, mainly in the 15th century, they were appointed in considerable number as part of a complex hierarchical structure, including territories (the upper level), podesterias, capitanatos, vicariatos, ecclesiastical and private jurisdictions etc.

Stato do Mar, i.e. overseas[edit]

Some were Venetian possessions much earlier, but we found no data on the style of their governors; most were lost to the Ottoman Turks, some only later to Bonaparte or to the British

Eastern Adriatic[edit]

  • On the peninsula Istria, a further territorio (now partly in Slovenia), e.g. Pola
  • Further south, in Dalmatia - cfr. infra

Individual Ionians Islands[edit]

  • Cephalonia (Italian name − at present in Greek Kephalonia) 1700−1799
  • Cerigo (Kythera) -full style castellano e provveditore, the first part referring to the citadel, cfr. infra- 1698−1799
  • Santa Maura (Leucada/Lefkada) 1700−1797
  • Zante (Zakynthos) 1698−1807

Venetian coastal fortresses in Greece (mainly continental)[edit]

Provveditore generale[edit]

If we render provveditore by governor, then provveditore generale by governor-general. Indeed this was the style of Venetian state officials supervising a whole region of the dogal sway:

  • 1409−1797 Dalmatia (mostly within present-day Croatia)
  • 1688−1715 in Morea (the medieval name for the Peloponese peninsula, the south of continental Greece, lost to the Ottoman Turks again in 1715), with his seat at Nauplion.

Venetian counterparts[edit]

  • On the Ionian island of Kerkyra (Corfu), the equivalent Venetian governorship was styled Baili ('Baillif').
  • Cerigotto maintained its own feudal rulers, styled Moite, accepting Venetian suzerainty since 1309
  • Style not known for the Venetian fortresses in present Greece at Parga, nor for (A)Egina island.
  • In Cyprus, the governorship was split between a civilian luogotenente and a military capitano.

Later Napoleonic use[edit]

Under French rule, Dalmatia was styled a provveditorate generale, or in French inspection générale in 1808, when it was integrated in the Napoleonic Italian kingdom, with three military subdivisions, Zara (Zadar), Spalato (Split, Spalatro), Bouches-du-Cattaro ('mouths of the river Kotor'), soon joined be the absorbed Ragusa (Dubrovnik), but on 14 October 1809 abolished and annexed into France's Illyrian provinces.

Sources and references[edit]