Francesco Foscari (1373 - 1457)

The longest reigning Doge of Venedig (43 years) from 1423 - 1457. When in 1423 Doge Tommaso Mocenigo (reigned 1414 - 1423)lay dying, Venice had already won the greater part of its terraferma empire. Mocenigo pleaded that he should be succeeded by a man of peace. Of Foscari he warned 'if you make him doge, which God forbid, you will shortly be at war; and whoever has 10,000 ducats, will find himself with only 1000.' Milan and Venezia had in 1423 already a longer phase of peace, the flowering trade made both cities extraordinarily rich. As Mocenigo predicted, war broke out with Foscari as Doge in end of 1425 and left both states exhausted 30 years later, and the unprotected Constantinople in the hands of the Osmans in 1453.

Foscari was a young doge at his election (49), with Filippo Maria Visconti (then 32 years old) he had a much younger opponent. In his reigning time Carmagnola was beheaded. Jacopo Antonio Marcello was in his service and also Francesco Sforza. Foscari got much criticisms in his last years and he was abdicated in 1457.

The political change in Venetia in 1423 is in the reach of the production time of the Michelino deck.

Foscari's life and the critical relation to his son Jacopo was the subject of a play The Two Foscari by Lord Byron. Byron's text served as the basis of an opera I Due Foscari by Giuseppe Verdi premiered in 1844.

More to his life

Palazzo Foscari

Foscari's monument

List of of the Venetian Doges with pictures

Francesco Foscari

Francesco Foscari by Lazzaro Bastiano
(ca. 1449 - 1512)
Venedig, Museo Correr

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- related to the Michelino Deck

1424/1425 - Michelino Deck 1447 / ca. 1470 - Decembrio Manuscript 1449 - Marcello's letter Great Condottieri (1424) Great Foes (1424) Filippo Maria's wifes The French Side, the great Context