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Chapter 3 - Fall of Venice

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These slides introduce Chapter 3: Fall of Venice to the Secondary 4 students who are studying Social Studies for the Singapore current syllabus.

These slides are divided into 4 factors.
1. Foreign Threats [Slide 5]
2. Maritime Competition [Slide 21]
3. Political Challenges [Slide 32]
4. Social Challenges [Slide 48]

Any feedback is welcome.

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Chapter 3 - Fall of Venice

  1. 1. Factors for the Fall of Venice Foreign Threats Maritime Competition Political Challenges Social Challenges
  2. 2. Eventual fall of Venice by surrendering to the French under Napoleon Bonaparte.
  3. 3. Which of these factors was the most important reason for the decline of Venice?
  4. 4. • Involvement in Mainland • The Ottoman Empire • The League of Cambrai Foreign Threats Maritime Competition Political Challenges Social Challenges
  5. 5. Venice created alliances with larger and more powerful states in Mainland Europe against other rival states • to protect her territories and commercial interests These mainland states were Venice’s source of water and food for her growing population and expanding industries.
  6. 6. Venice tried to take advantage of rivalry among the mainland states by taking sides.
  7. 7. the only way was to build own strong army by recruiting mercenaries to fight the wars. To overcome the possibility that negotiations could put Venetians at risk,
  8. 8. By switching alliances with different opposing states, Venice was creating fragile relations with larger states – putting Venice at risk. Venice could be attacked should negotiations fail. The rivalry among the mainland states also made the overland trade route unsafe as constant battles were fought in the region.
  9. 9. Expanding power of the Ottoman Empire (Turkey) saw constant wars with Venice especially over the control of the Adriatic Sea. The Ottomans attacked Venetian territories from their own territories along the coast of the Adriatic Sea.
  10. 10. Venice fought a 7-year war against the sea campaigns started by Ottoman to wrestle for the control of the Aegean Sea and the Adriatic Sea.
  11. 11. The Venetians tried to strike a balance of power with the Ottomans and their European neighbours.
  12. 12. In 1463, the European states launched a military campaign against the Ottomans. Due to resentment, Venice fought the Ottomans on their own and lost Negroponte, an important Eastern trade outpost. Conflicting actions such as concessions made to the Ottomans, and military aid sent to European states to fight the Ottomans in defence of their territories led to a deep hostility for Venice.
  13. 13. The wars with Venice and expansion of the Ottoman empire resulted in Venice losing some territories. Venice’s poor relations with other European states left Venice to defend against the Ottoman Empire alone.
  14. 14. This severely weakened Venice, and trade in the Adriatic Sea was disrupted.
  15. 15. Venice was forced to give up some of the mainland territories to avoid being involved in mainland wars.
  16. 16. The galleys were used to fight off attacks by the Ottomans in the 7-year sea-campaigns. This disrupted its use of galleys for trading purposes.
  17. 17. The League of Cambrai was formed by Mainland states to reduce power of Venice and divide the territories amongst the larger states. In one of the battles of Agnadello, the Venetian mercenary army was defeated and Venice lost many of its territories. The defeat at Agnadello stretched Venice’s political and military capabilities. By forming new alliances, she managed to recapture some of its territories.
  18. 18. Venice lost more territories. She had to raise taxes to finance the employment of its mercenary armies as well as to replenish supply of weaponry. Renewed campaigns results in Venice weakened due to the high cost of wars and the drain of resources
  19. 19. Foreign Threats • Discovery of new sea routes • New trade rivals Maritime Competition Political Challenges Social Challenges
  20. 20. Vasco da Gama (Portuguese explorer) discovered a new sea route to India.
  21. 21. This broke Venice’s monopoly in spice trade. This also made Portuguese stronger and more powerful.
  22. 22. They were now able to buy spices directly from India and greatly reduced the large profits of the Venetian traders.
  23. 23. Venice lost monopoly in spice trade and suffered losses in their economy.
  24. 24. Portuguese become stronger which provided strong competition to Venice’s trade. Although Venice’s traditional route to the East by the Mediterranean was shorter, it was time- consuming. The overland route to Hormuz was also considered risky because of robbers and plunderers.
  25. 25. Despite losing its middleman role, Venice continued to function as a trade centre in western Mediterranean Sea for Persian silk, Mediterranean wine, glassware.
  26. 26. Venice also expanded its trade to the North Sea region and maintained trade links with England.
  27. 27. More European countries began to trade directly with the East instead of going through Venice as middleman and her entreport trade Dutch EIC & English EIC with better designed ships
  28. 28. Larger states such as England and Holland were more successful in negotiating for favourable trading rights in new ports.
  29. 29. Venice lost trade as a middleman as European countries no longer use Venice a source of goods from the East Venice became economically irrelevant. Venetians responded by imposing protectionist policy on foreign traders. This made it costly to trade with Venetians.
  30. 30. Foreign Threats Maritime Competition • Incapable leadership • Corruption in government • Over- dependence on mercenaries Political Challenges Social Challenges
  31. 31. From 16th century , many of the military leaders were not competent. The shrinking number of the nobility as older families died; decline in the nobility was worsened by the 17th century plague.
  32. 32. Most of the policies focused on preserving power, prestige and wealth of nobles rather than for the good of the city-state. Rotation of duties led to incompetent officers taking up positions by default, even in leading the naval warfare against the Ottomans.
  33. 33. With a shrinking pool of nobility to select leaders from, the choice of able leaders was thus limited With weak military leaders, Venice could not compete with enemies led by capable and qualified leaders, this led to many losses and the decline of Venice. Nobles sought to retain their family wealth, property and power, resulting in domination of a small group of rich nobles in the government.
  34. 34. With power in the hands of a few, corruption was inevitable in the higher offices.
  35. 35. Due to the wars with Ottoman Empire and the large European states and the disruption of trade, civil servants’ salaries were suspended. Some members of the nobility lost their source of income.
  36. 36. Nobles bought votes to gain position. Nobles also sold positions to raise funds.
  37. 37. 100, 000 ducats (S$15 million)
  38. 38. Because of loss of wealth, nobles sold their votes to those who wanted to gain position and also sold positions to raise funds
  39. 39. This led to corruption in the government.
  40. 40. This also led to the rise of a group of nobles in the Venetians who made policies to serve their own nobility interests more than for the interests of the city- state.
  41. 41. Venice employed French and Dutch mercenaries to fight battles. Mercenaries are well-paid during strong economic growth.
  42. 42. Venice was greatly dependent on mercenaries more after population declined following the plague.
  43. 43. In 1615, Venice hired mercenaries of many nationalities to fight the War of Gradisca. Instead, the French mercenaries plotted to seize the Ducal Palace and the Senate members. This showed that they could no longer fully trust the mercenary army.
  44. 44. Mercenaries turned against Venice and fought for the larger and richer states. Venice became weaker when the mercenaries left or turned against them, leading to easy defeats of Venice
  45. 45. Foreign Threats Maritime Competition Political Challenges • Complacency • Over- indulgence in affluent lifestyle Social Challenges
  46. 46. Nobles became richer and less interested and prepared for war and security matters.
  47. 47. When Venice is strong in economic growth, lifestyles of nobles become better. Nobles also became more distant from commoners.
  48. 48. They pursued entertainment and pleasures, with lavish parties and celebrations.
  49. 49. Nobles who were entrusted with the affairs of the state became complacent about territorial issues. It was only a matter of time that they would be proven to have outdated fortresses and army. Nobles were not alert to changes in the political scene in the region eg. France’s growing power under the leadership of Napoleon Bonaparte. There were no capable nobles to lead and organise an army to defeat Napolean.
  50. 50. Instead, a small number of Venetians, aided by the French, plotted to overthrow Venetian ruling government.
  51. 51. When Napoleon confronted Venice, Doge Ludovico Manin surrendered the city- state without a single shot fired.
  52. 52. The decline of Venice was COMPLETE.
  53. 53. Goh Bang Rui on @slideshare. @gohbangrui bit.ly/gohbangrui