2011 fascicolo II


Giovanna Petti Balbi, Fenomeni usurari e restituzioni: la situazione ligure (secoli XII-XIV)

This paper focuses on the problem of usury seen in different forms: the illegal earnings, the restitution’s practices that the local rules and canonical law imposed on a strong market oriented society. Commercial trades, investments in public debt, piracy’s events, all offer the opportunity to usury practices that drew also the interest of Franciscan authors accustomed to such topics.


Mustafa Soykut, Note sui rapporti tra Italia, Islam e impero ottomano (secoli XV-XVIII)

The present article attempts to shed light on the relations between Islam, Italy and the Ottoman Empire. Seen from the perspective of the hitherto lesser known archival sources on political history, it focuses on the writings of Marcello Marchesi, the imperial councilor to Rudolf II and Angelo Petricca da Sonnino, the apostolic vicar Istanbul during the Thirty Years War. In order to give the reader a contrasting perspective, this article also focuses on the self-perception and on the general world view of the Ottomans vis-à-vis Europe in modern era. Within the framework of political history, it not only attempts to highlight certain patterns pertinent to the relations between two civilizations, but also attempts to explore the genealogy of a priori Western notions about the Islamic culture and civilization.


Carlo Campitelli, L’Oratione alli fuoriusciti di Fiorenza et altri cittadini amatori della libertà (1556). Per un’attribuzione a Bartolomeo Cavalcanti

The essay gives a new contribution to the study of florentine political exile through the publication and the analysis of an unpublished text: the Oratione alli fuorusciti di Fiorenza et altri cittadini amatori della libertà. Almost forgotten by historians, the document proves the vitality of the republican spirit. After the truce of Vaucelles and despite the recent defeats in war (Marciano and Siena), it in fact shows that the hope of disengaging from the tyranny of the Medici family was still in the exiles’ environment. According to a series of cultural, rhetorical and ideological elements the suggestive hypothesis that the author of the text is Bartolomeo Cavalcanti is brought forward. Bartolomeo Cavalcanti was a famous literary figure and diplomat and one of the main Florentine Diaspora representatives. In those years he was living in Rome on behalf of the Farnese family and would shortly be entering the service of cardinal François de Tournon.


Richard A. Goldthwaite, Le aziende seriche e il mondo degli affari a Firenze alla fine del ’500

The article is primarily a study of a Florentine silk firm active in the last two decades of the sixteenth century. It is based on research into the firm’s surviving account books, it being perhaps the best documented of all firms for which accounts survive for this period. The emphasis is on business organization and management rather than on technical aspects of production. Beyond being a study in business history, however, the article has three wider objectives. The second part of the article builds on this study of one firm and on research soundings in the accounts of contemporary firms to arrive at some generalizations about the silk industry in Florence at the end of the sixteenth century. From this point, the article then proceeds to a third section to extend the horizon of the study to the business culture in this period in general, with special attention to contrasts with the situation a century earlier, in the 15th century, which has been well studied by historians. Finally, an appendix offers a preliminary inventory of all the surviving account books of all the Florentine silk and battiloro companies from the end of the 14th century to 1600 that are known to the author, both in public and private archives. In short, the article has been conceived as a contribution to the economic history of Florence at the end of the sixteenth century, with the hope of stimulating further research into a period that has scarcely been studied.



Francesco Pirani, Moderazione del vivere cittadino: il Testamentum di Pietro da Fermo (1292)

This essay takes in account an unpublished and unknown manuscript preserved in the public Library «Romolo Spezioli» of Fermo. It’s a ‘moral’ testament written by a civic servant, Pietro da Fermo, at the end of the XIIIth Century, while he was in the town of Rieti, in the service of the podestà Offreduccio di Falerone. Pietro’s text, addressed to his sons, is composed of 83 rubrics, mainly gathering sententiae and proverbs coming from classical and medieval literature. The text has no originality or literary pretensions.  It proves, nevertheless, the wide circulation, within an average culture such as the one of Pietro da Fermo, of ideas developed in the contemporary didactic literature. The author spreads a “down to earth” education, addressed to the citizens that were aware both of the institutions as well as the social practices of communal towns, and of their delicate balance, a field where lies the concrete experience of the author and those to whom he is writing.


Mauro Ronzani, A proposito della nuova edizione dei «Gesta triumphalia per Pisanos facta»

Giuseppe Scalia recently has provided an excellent edition of the text called “Gesta triumphalia per Pisanos facta”. It contains several sections, dealing with the first Crusade, the Italian journey of Henry V in 1110-1111, the Pisan expedition against Maiorca in 1113-1115 and, finally, the war caused by Genoua, after pope Gelasius II, in September 1118, had confirmed the Pisan Archbishop in the metropolitan authority over Corsica. Our text was organized in the present format between 1119 and 1120, in order to convince the new pope, Callixtus II, to confirm definitively this decision.


Sandro Carocci, Vassalli del papa. Potere pontificio, aristocrazie e città nello Stato della Chiesa (Francesco Pirani)

Rosa Smurra, Città, cittadini e imposta diretta a Bologna alla fine del Duecento (Diana Tura)

Stéphan Pequignot, Au nom du roi. Pratique diplomatique et pouvoir durant le règne de Jacques II e d’Aragon (Lorenzo Tanzini)

Beatrice del Bo, Banca e politica a Milano a metà Quattrocento (Sergio Tognetti)

Lorenzo Bianchi, Alberto Postigliola, Dopo Machiavelli / Après Machiavel (Sergio Bertelli)

Oretta Filippini, Memoria della Chiesa, memoria dello Stato. Carlo Cartari (1614-1697) e l’Archivio di Castel Sant’Angelo (Linda Giuva)

Il Piemonte come eccezione. Riflessioni sulla “Piedmontese exception”, a cura di Paola Bianchi (Paola Volpini)


Archivio Storico Italiano – ISSN 0391-7770