Time Travels in Venice

1. 1082 Chrysobulla between Venice (Doge Domenico Selvo) and Byzantium (the emperor Alexios I Komnenos). The princess Theodora Doukas was already wife to Doge Domenico Selvo. On the occasion of the marriage the Doge was nominated protosebastes and thus member of the imperial family. Time Travels were organized at the court of Theodora, on 1082, to feast the honours given to her husband. A banquet was held in Palazzo Mocenigo (S.Stae in the centre of Venice). Two primary schools (San Francesco di Sales and Renier-Michiel) took part to the event in the school year 2006-7.

One middle school from Venice (Istituto Marcianum) also studied and represented the same event this school year 2007-8. They deepened the understanding of the historical event by working at the document of the Chrysobulla at the Venice State Archives. The banquet took occasion from the understanding of the importance of the chrysobulla as a commercial gift, making Venice free from Byzantine taxes in harbours.

 2. 1453 Peace Treaty between Venice (Doge Foscari) and Istanbul (Maomet II) thanks to the Baily (the Ambassador) Bartolomeo Marcello. The treaty was signed first in Istanbul and then in Venice. Time Travels feasted the signature in Venice in Palazzo Ducale in the Scrutinium Hall (where the oil painting represents the battle of Lepanto in 1571, when Turkey was defeated), at the presence of the Doge Foscari, of the Council of Ten, of the Venitian Senatus, of the Turkish and the Venitian delegations. Two middle schools from Venice and Mestre (Giulio Cesare and Sansovino) took part to the event.

 The pupils were brought during the school year to understand and recognize historical places, usages and costumes of the historical events under examination. To discover and feel the importance for Venice of the Byzantine world, pupils were taken to San Marco Basilica; through the city to observe the Byzantine patere (sort of shallow white plates placed on the external walls as decorative elements); the costumes and jewels were handicrafts by the same pupils; "Byzantine" ceremonial dance workshops were also tentatively organized.Also, to feel the importance to Venice of the Turkish world a trip to the Gallery of the Accademia was organized, and a visit to Turkish memories still standing in Venitian architectures, such as the Fondaco dei Turchi on the Canal Grande. A visit to Venice State Archives were also organized and to the Costumes and Fashion Museum (Palazzo Mocenigo).

The Project was planned and realized by Palatina Istanbul didactic section Historia Magistra Vitae in Venice, headed by Cecile Franchetti. It was supported in 2006-7 by the Venetian Civic Museums as Pilot Project of Didactic. In both school years 2006-7 and 2007-8 the Project had the honour of having the Patrocinium of the Honorary Consulate of Turkey in Venice with Mr. Alessandro Olivetti. 

Eugenia Bolognesi, Associazione Palatina-Istanbul, Rome