We take a very quick look back at the region of Tuscany and bring it up to 1302 when we last visited in the time of Dante to see how Florence gradually became the predominant force in the area. We see how things went with the Guelphs and Ghibellines inside and outside the region with all the “international” players while all the while the corporations make their way into the halls of power.
We go back over around 50 years from the death of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II to beyond 1300 to retrace the steps of the kingdom of Sicily, the war of the Sicilian Vespers, the northern communes and maritime republics as well as looking over at Sardinia and keeping an eye as always on the papacy.
After definitively defeating the Ghibellines, the Florentine Guelphs need new enemies so they split into White and Black Guelphs, catching Dante Alighieri, who had entered politics just a few years before, in a crossfire that will have dire consequences. On a literary level, he starts to get the idea of a sort od mid life crisis travel book…
Before saying goodbye to the 13th century, we take a quick tour of the peninsula to tie up some loose ends, such as the maritime republics, Piedmont and the situation with the communes.
We take a look back at the negotiation and the dealings that brought Charles of Anjou into Italy. Then Marco Cappelli tells us about the last stand of Conradine of Hohenstauen at the battle that took place near Marco’s home town Tagliacozzo.