That Venice is a republic founded on war is the thesis of this book, in which the author has attempted to combine the rigour of historical documentation with the fluency of a narrative as capable of arresting the reader’s attention as a novel. The history of the Serenissima has often assumed epic tones and presented us with characters worthy of fiction. But with one significant difference: hers is a story written in blood. Witness to this are the battlefields, on land and at sea, where the armies and naval fleets of the Repubblic confronted every type od adversary in the course of the centuries. Sometimes emerging the victors, on ther occasions paying for errors and the superiority of the foe with ignominious defeats. Courage and cowardice, audacity and fear, intelligence and stupidity, ambiguity and betrayal, as always in war, have accompanied those fighting under the banner of San Marco, forging the essential characteristics of the Serenissima, and subsequently proving to be decisive in the unfolding of political, social, economic and cultural events. Venice at War explicity argues that Venice, city and state, was born fighting and has never hesitated, except at the end, to use force whenever this was considered necessary, opportune, expedient: she used armed resistance against those who tried to subjugate her and built an empire in attack. An whitout hypocrisy, the book claims her right to do so. Because this is the ecology of the state-form. An essay with no room for the myth of a gay and licentious Venice, dedicated only to pleasure and desirous of peace, created by a great deal of publicity, a book unafraid to penetrate the most obscure corners of the true story of the Serenissima.

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