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Pietro Ziani (died 13 March 1230) was the 42nd Doge of Venice from 15 August 1205 to 1229, succeeding Enrico Dandolo. He was the son of Doge Sebastian Ziani of the very rich noble family. He was married to Maria Baseggio and Constance of Sicily.
In his youth a sailor, he commanded a flotilla escorting the emperor Frederick Barbarossa in 1177, took also part in the Fourth Crusade and sacking of Constinople. After his election, Ziani is said to consider the transfer of the capital of the Republic to Constantinople, but eventually the Council decided against it. Instead, he organized the Venetian acquisitions in the territory of the Latin Empire: Crete, Corfu, other islands and the substantial part of Constantinople itself, demanding an oath from the Venetian colony in the city. Ziani established also commercial ties with the post-Byzantine states, signing in 1210 a treaty with the despotate of Epirus under Michael I Komnenos Doukas.
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|Doge of Venice