GENOA

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GENOA ; a Sardinian dukedom, and a city on the Mediterranean sea, which here forms the gulf of Genoa. The city contains 76,000 inhabitants, 15,000 houses, and is about a league in diameter. On the land side, it is surrounded by a double line of fortifications: the outer ones are extended beyond the hills which overlook the city. The spacious harbor is enclosed and made secure by two moles, and the city lies in a semicircular form around it. It was made a free port in 1751. In the small inner harbor, called Darsena,, vessels find shelter from every wind. Genoa has been styled the magnificent, the proud, partly because of its fine situation, like an amphitheatre on the sea, with overhanging mountains; and partly on account of the splendid palaces of the wealthy nobility. From the sea, Genoa makes a grand appearance; but, notwithstanding its numerous palaces, one can scarce pronounce it really beautiful ; for, in consequence of its confined site, and of its being on a declivity, the streets are mostly narrow, dirty, and so steep, that but few of them can be passed in carriages, or on horseback. Hence the people make their visits in sedans, if the weather is bad, which are carried behind them, when the weather is fine. There are, however, some streets which are broad and regular, particularly that called Balbi, and the elegant new street, in which are many palaces with marble fronts. Among the buildings thus distinguished are the cathedral, the palace of the former doge, the palaces of Balbi and Doria, and the Jesuit college, rebuilt in 1817. The city bus an aqueduct, which supplies it with water from fountains, and fine walks. A considerable trade is carried on in oliveoil and fruit. There are also manufac tures of silks, of some importance, particularly the black stuffs, velvet, damask and stockings, which employ about 1500 looms ; also of cloth, cotton hose, hats, macaroni, candied fruits, chocolate, white lead, &c. The silk is obtained partly in the province1 itself, and is also brought from the rest of Italy, especially Calabria, Sicily, the island of Cyprus and Syria. Genoa is now the seat of an archbishop, and possesses a senate, a high court, and commercial tribunal, a university, three literary societies, a trading company, established in 1816, St. George's bank, and a marine school. The late republic, ana present duchy of GENOA, containing 2330 square miles, and 590,500 inhabitants, is bounded east by Lucca and Tuscany, west and north by Savoy, Piedmont and Lombardy, and south by the sea. It was divided into two parts, the eastern and the western (Riviera di Levante and Riviera di Ponente). In the former lie Genoa and Sestri di Levante; in the latter, Vintimiglia, San Remo, Savona, Finale. Along the north side appear the Apennines, which extend in neighboring masses, nearly to the coast. The territory is, notwithstanding the mountainous nature of the country, very fertile. The nobility are remarkable for their learning and good morals, the people for their spirit and industry. The original inhabitants of the country were the Ligurians, who were conquered by the Romans, during the interval between the first and second Punic war. After the decline of the Roman empire in the West, they fell into the hands of the Lombards, and with them became subject to the Franks. After the downfall of the empire of Charlemagne, Genoa erected itself into a republic, and, till the 11th century, shared the fortunes of the cities of Lombardy. The situation of the city was favorable to commerce, and it pursued the trade of the Levant, even earlier than Venice. The acquisitions of the Genoese on the continent gave rise, as early as the beginning of the 12th century, to violent contentions with the enterprising and industrious merchants and tradesmen of Pisa, who became their near neighbors, after Genoa had made itself master of the gulf of Spezzia. In 1174, Genoa possessed Montferrat, Monaco, Nizza, Marseilles, almost the whole coast of Provence, and the island of Corsica. The quarrel with the Pisans continued over two hundred years, and peace was Dot concluded until Genoa had destroyed the harbor of Pisa, and conquered the island of Elba. Not less violent was the contest with Venice, which was first terminated in 1282, by the peace of Turin. As it was the dominion over the western part of the Mediterranean, which formed the subject of dispute with Pisa, so, in the war with Venice, it was contended which should possess the eastern portion of that sea. The Genoese made commercial treaties with the different nations of the Levant. Their superiority in trade was at its highest point at the time of the revival of the GrsecoByzantine empire, about the middle of the 13th century. Long before had the inactivity of Constantinople allowed the Genoese to obtain a large share in the commerce of the Grecian states. But when the Genoese took possession of the town of Caffa, now Feodosia, in the peninsula of Crimea (see Cajja), they also acquired the control of the Black sea, and obtained the rich commodities of India by the way of the Caspian. If Genoa had adopted a wrise colonial system, and had known how to bind her settlements together by a common interest, and to knit them, as it were, to the parent state, she would have held the first rank among the commercial nations at the end of the middle ages. After the conquest of Constantinople, by Mahomet II, in 1453, the Genoese soon suffered for the aid they had imprudently afforded the Turks Mahomet took from them their settlements on the Black sea, in 1475. They still, it is true, carried on, for a long time, a lucrative trade with the inhabitants of this region; but at last all access to this branch of trade was denied them by the Turks. Even the commercial intercourse which the Tartars of the Crimea had for a considerable time maintained with GENOA, in their own ships, wTas cut off by Turkish jealousy. While the power and commercial rank of Genoa were attaining their height by means of their foreign trade and acquisitions of territory, the city was internally convulsed by civil discord and party spirit. The hostility of the democrats and aristocrats, and the different parties among the latter, occasioned continual disorder. In 1339, a chief magistrate, the doge, was elected for life, by the people : but he had not sufficient influence to reconcile the contending parties. A council was appointed to aid him; yet, after all attempts to restore order to the state, there was no internal tranquillity; indeed, the city sometimes submitted to a foreign yoke, in or der to get rid or the uisastrous anarchy which the conflict of parties produced. In the midst of this confusion, St. George's bank (compera di S. Georgio), was founded. It owed its origin to the loans furnished by the wealthy citizens to the state, and was conscientiously supported by the alternately dominant parties. In 1528, the disturbed state regained tranquillity and order, which lasted till the end of the 18th century. The form of government established was a strict aristocracy. The doge was elected to be the bead of the state. He was required to be 50 years of age, and to reside in the palace of the republic (palazza dtlla signoria), where also the senate held their meetings. The doge had the right of proposing all laws in the senate. Without his acquiescence, the senate could pass no decree ; and the orders of the government were issued in his name. He continued in office no longer than two years," after which he became a senator and procurator, and, at the expiration of five years, was again eligible to the office of chief magistrate. The doge was assisted in the administration of the government by twelve governors and eight procurators (not counting such as had previously held the office of doge), who likewise retained their office two years. They constituted the privy council, who, with the doge, had charge of all state affairs. The procurators had charge of the public treasury and state revenue. The sovereignty was possessed, in the first instance, by the great council, composed of 300 members, among whom were all the Genoese nobles, who had reached the age of 22 years. Secondly, by the smaller council, consisting of 100 members. Both had a right to deliberate with the governors and procurators upon laws, customs, levies and taxes ; in which cases the majority of votes decided. It belonged to the smaller council to negotiate respecting war and peace, and foreign alliances ; and the consent of four fifths, at least, of the members, was required for the passage of a law. The nobility were divided into two classesthe old and new* To the old belonged, besides the families of Grimaldi, Fieschi, Doria, SpinoJa, 24 others, wdio stood nearest them in age, wealth and consequence. The new nobility comprised 437 families. The doge might be taken from the old or new nobles, indiscriminately. By little and little, Genoa lost all her foreign possessions, Corsica, the last of all, revolted in 1730 and was ceded, in 1768, to France. Whei> the neighboring countries submitted to the French in 1797, the neutrality, which the republic had strictly observed, did not save their fluctuating government from ruin. Bonaparte gave them a new constitution, formed upon the principles of the French representative system. Two years afterwards, a portion of the Genoese territory fell into the hands of the Austrians ; but the fate of Genoa was decided by the battle of Marengo. A provisional government was established, and, in 1802, it received a new constitution, as the Ligurian republic The doge was assisted by 29 senators, and a council of 72 members, as representatives of the people, which met annually, examined the government accounts, and approved the laws proposed to them by the senate. The members of the council were elected by three colleges, and consisted of 300 landed proprietors, 200 merchants, and 100 men of the literary professions. The republic also acquired some increase of territory, and had, in 1804, a population exceeding 600,000. Its naval force, which was so formidable in the middle ages, now consists only of from four to six galleys, and some armed barques. The land force comprises two German regiments of government guards, 3000 national troops, and 2000 militia. The shipping trade was, in June, 1805, when the republic was incorporated with the French empire, but the shadow of its former greatness, and extended no further than to Italy, the south of France, Spain and Portugal. Before the last wars in Europe, the Genoese supplied a great part of Italy wTith eastern spices, which were brought to them by the Dutch, with sugar and coffee, partly from Lisbon, and partly from Marseilles, and with fish and salt. Ships from Hamburg brought Saxon linen and cloth. The carrying trade of Genoa was of consequence, but the most important branch of its business was its dealings in money and exchange. Many of the European states, Spain particularly, were debtors to the bank of Genoa, and to wealthy individuals in the city. The bank was, in part, for loans, and partly for deposit. It possessed some fine territories, and its income was over ten millions of French livres. The administration of its concerns was committed to eight directors, and it had jurisdiction over its own officers. But the more frequently the state sought relief from the bank, in its pressing wants, so much the more did it decline in credit. The republic had pledged various imposts for the paymentof the interest upon capital borrowed from the bank, which were continually increased, if they were not sufficient to pay it. At the union of Genoa with the French empire, the bank was abolished, and the rents of 3,400,000 Genoese lire, which they owed to their creditors, were transferred to the account books of France. Upon the overthrow of the French empire, the British became possessed of their city; and the Genoese hoped the more confidently for the reestablishment of their ancient commonwealth, as they had received the assurance of the British commander, Bentinck, in the name of his government, to this effect. But the congress of Vienna, in 1815, assigned Genoa, with its territories, to Sardinia, stipulating that it should have a sort of representative constitution. Accordingly, Genoa has its senate, and its provincial council, which must be consulted in the business of taxation. The high court at Genoa has equal powers with that at Turin, Nizza, &c., the university was retained ; St. George's bank restored, &c. The government is administered by a commission appointed for the purpose, which is divided into three departmentsthat of internal affaire, finance, the military and marine.