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Bulletin of the John Rylands Library

This book provides the first English translation of the Chronicle of the city of Genoa by the thirteenth-century Dominican Jacopo da Varagine (also known as Jacobus de Voragine). While Jacopo is better known for his monumental compilation of saints’ lives, the Golden legend, his lesser known Chronicle of Genoa exemplifies the important medieval genre of the civic chronicle. The work mixes scholarly research about the city’s origins with narrative accounts based on Genoese archival sources, more didactic and moral reflections on the proper conduct of public and private life, and personal accounts of Jacopo’s own experience as archbishop of Genoa from 1292 until his death in 1298. Divided into twelve parts, the work covers the history of Genoa from its ancient origins up to Jacopo’s own day. Jacopo’s first-hand accounts of events in which he himself participated—such as the great civic reconciliation of 1295, over which he himself presided—provide a valuable contrast to the more scholarly and didactic sections of the work. Together they form an integrated, coherent approach to urban history, which illustrates some of the most important styles of historiography in the Middle Ages.

Trevor Dean

From commune to signoria , from independence to subjection The Italian communes of the thirteenth century have been celebrated for their recreation of the institutions and methods of ancient democracy. Political participation was widened beyond the families of a narrow élite. Appointment to executive boards and committees was based

in The towns of Italy in the later Middle Ages
The construction of the leper in Narbonne and Siena before the plague
Anna M. Peterson

: Cambridge University Press , 2014 ), pp. 37–8 . 3 J. Caille , ‘ Historical overview: Narbonne from Roman foundations to the fifteenth century ’, in K. L. Reyerson (ed.), Medieval Narbonne: A City at the Heart of the Troubadour World ( Aldershot : Ashgate , 2005 ), pp. 1–56 (pp. 11–12 ). 4 W. Bowsky , A Medieval Italian Commune: Siena under the Nine, 1287–1355 ( Berkeley : University of California Press , 1981 ), pp. 23–4 ; O. Redon , ‘ Qualche considerazione sulle magistrature forestiere a Siena nel duecento e nella prima metà del

in Leprosy and identity in the Middle Ages
Abstract only
Sally Mayall Brasher

. Urban Italian society was more complex than earlier medieval rural society and the demands on government to meet social welfare needs were much greater. 9 The Italian city-states were unique in Western Europe in the degree to which they created independent governments and in the novel institutions of welfare that they were forced to conceive. It was at this point in the development of the Italian commune that hospitals took on their most expansive role. They provided a social security net for the urban community by protecting the

in Hospitals and charity
From devotion to destruction
Paul Fouracre

, and these donors like their predecessors enjoyed the protection of the church in taking on the fiscal immunity of their host institution. This was resented, especially in the Italian communes. What is clear is that these self-givers did not enter the servant familia of the monastery, they were not tied to tributes to be paid to an institution and they had the right to enter the monastery when close to death. 22 This speaks of a world rather different from that in which to give one’s self was to enter a kind of religious servitude. Again, in terms of providing

in Eternal light and earthly concerns
History and context
Sally Mayall Brasher

the Profit Economy. 18 Morris, The Papal Monarchy , 321. 19 A. Thompson, Cities of God: The Religion of the Italian Communes 1125–1325 (University Park, PA, 2005), 45. 20 Albini, Città e ospedali , 23, 66, 76. 21 Morris, The Papal Monarchy , 320. 22 Waley and Dean, The Italian City-Republics, 52–6 . 23 For a comprehensive perspective on the variations in episcopal governmental relations in Italy see

in Hospitals and charity
Trevor Dean

properties of the commune, to whose office belongs the creation and laying of roads and squares … Item, it is ordained that the tombs that are around the church of St John be raised, removed and placed elsewhere. 8 Commune and new cathedral: Perugia, 1300 Though the Italian communes developed strongly the

in The towns of Italy in the later Middle Ages
Sally Mayall Brasher

original founder had desired governance by this group in 1091, it would appear that they did not have the influence to do so until a century later. 12 This date coincides with the emergence of powerful citizen groups in Milanese political life, such as, the elite la Motta familial civic organization and the more egalitarian credential sancti Ambrosia. 13 The second half of the thirteenth century witnessed an era in which the affairs of the hospital reflected a greater trend toward civic participation of the citizenry of the urban Italian commune. Members of family

in Hospitals and charity
C. E. Beneš

. 84 GA 2.83–4. While many other Italian communes gained control of the surrounding countryside (their contado ) by military means, the Genoese often bought such properties outright—as here, in a treaty dated 18 September 1202: Libri iurium 1/3, pp. 203–5 (no. 527). See Epstein ( 1996 ), p. 90; CMG , chap. 2 (Guglielmotti), esp. pp. 56

in Jacopo Da Varagine’s Chronicle of the city of Genoa