[MR] Wikipedia: What Was a Doge?

Garth Groff via Atlantia atlantia at seahorse.atlantia.sca.org
Thu Jul 6 02:24:12 PDT 2017

Noble Friends,

Those of us who read history often encounter mention of the Doge of 
Venice. Curiosity got the better of me, so I decided to find out what 
the term meant.

According to a Wikipedia article, the Doge was the chief magistrate and 
and leader of Venetian Republic, the office being extant from 697 to 
1797: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doge_of_Venice . The Doge was not a 
hereditary office, but was rather selected by a committee from the 
leading commercial families of the city. Over the years, the selection 
committee's own selection became quite byzantine in efforts to keep any 
one family from dominating the office. The Doge ruled as a sovereign 
prince, but could be removed from office.

The Doge of Venice was part of the Signoria of Venice, the supreme 
government body. This group was both a senate and provided the Doge's 
cabinet. Membership was drawn from the elite of the republic: 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Signoria_of_Venice .

Genoa was also a republic headed by a Doge from 1339 to 1797. At first 
this was a lifetime office, but from 1528 the office was limited to 
two-year terms: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doge_of_Genoa .

Yours Aye,

Mungo Napier, Laird of Mallard Lodge

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