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9 February 1685|
|Died||19 May 1762
|Resting place||Santi Giovanni e Paolo, Rome|
|Years active||18 March 1752 - 19 May 1762|
Francesco Loredan (9 February 1685 in Venice – 19 May 1762 in Venice) was a Venetian statesman of the Loredan family; he served as the 116th Doge of Venice from 18 March 1752 until his death. Loredan was a man of modest culture and limited international experience, and had been raised primarily for a life of commerce; in this he stood in stark contrast to his immediate predecessor, Pietro Grimani, who was a poet and diplomat. Loredan was succeeded as Doge by Marco Foscarini.
Loredan was elected on 18 March 1752 but the announcement was on 6 April, postponed because of Easter. By this point, the dogal figure had lost nearly all his power and he quickly adapted to this new situation. One of the biggest issues in domestic politics at the time was the clash between the conservatives and the reformers. The latter wanted to substantially reform the Republic and sought to build internal reforms. The conservative pressure groups were able to block these plans and imprisoned or exiled the reformis leaders, such as Angelo Querini, an important figure of the Venetian Enlightenment. The Doge did not want to show favour to one side or the other, so he remained totally passive and limited his support to making it easier for the winning side, thereby losing his chance to change the fate of the dying republic. By impeding the development of the reformist ideas, he possibly caused the small economic boom which started around 1756 with the outbreak of the Seven Years' War. The neutrality of the Republic during this time allowed the merchants to trade in huge markets without competitors. The French defeat even allowed Venice to become the biggest market for eastern spices. At one point the Doge, who was old and tired by then, seemed about to die but recovered and lived for another year, until his death on 19 March 1762. The other nobles, such as Marco Foscarini, anxiously spent this time hoping that they could replace him was a sign. This was a sign of how little they respected him. Their disrespect was so strong they often mocked him, even in public.
- Golden Rose - 1759
- "Chronology of Venice". Retrieved 6 April 2013.
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