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The last wills of Dalmatian patricians in Venice (XV-XVIII centuries)

Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts
Publication Date
  • Economics


Research on the emigration, life and activities of the Dalmatian patricians in Venice is an indispensable component of Croatian migrations accros the Adriatic in the past. The wills drawn dawn by the notaries - which are fundamental and the most often utilized sources for research on Croatian emigration to Venice - were used in this study. Their analysis shows the patricians of various Dalmatian towns during past centuries as elite and, by their social status and economic capacities, distinguished part of our emigration community. In most of cases they were not permanent residents of Venice but only temporary, for family or business matters. Considering their origine they were descendents of patrician families from Zadar in the first place, and then Šibenik, Split, Trogir, Hvar etc. They were distinguished by possessing extremely high capital, property possessions, extended business connections and closeness within their own social community. The legacies of their wills give evidence of close connections with their homeland, stated by countless gifts and donations to their family members, religious institutions and clergymen. The wills of Dalmatian patricians in Venice may be considered as very important sources for researches on Croatian emigration across the Adriatic and precious material for new knowledges of Dalmatia during the past centuries.

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