Giudicato of Arborea


Giudicato of Arborea

The "Giudicato" of Arborea was one of the four independent, hereditary "judicatures" ("giudicati") into which the island of Sardinia was divided in the High Middle Ages. It occupied the central-west portion of the island, wedged between Logudoro to the north and east, Cagliari to the south and east, and the Mediterranean Sea to the west. To the north west and beyong Logudoro was located Gallura, with which Arborea had far less interaction. Arborea outlasted her neighbours, surviving well into the fifteenth century. The earliest known judicial seat was Tharros (Tarra).

Origins

In the early ninth century, when the Arabs and Berbers of North Africa became aggressive in expansion and piracy, the Byzantine Empire was unable to effectively defend Sardinia and so certain provincial judges assumed independent authority over and provision for local defence. The island became divided into four "iudicati", local autonomous provinces ruled by "iudices". By the tenth century, these districts had become hereditary or rotated amongst a few most powerful clans.

The first important judge ("giudice") of Arborea was Marianus I (ruled 1060 – 1070) of the Thori family. In 1070, his successor, Orzocorre I moved the capital from the ancient port of Tharros, which was exposed to Arab attacks, to Oristano. At about that time, Sardinia begins to emerge from obscurity and come into the historian's view. Under the ambitious Pope Gregory VII, then leading a papal reform, Sardinia was integrated into the wider Christendom. By the infusion of Western monasticism and Pisan ecclesiastic rule, she became involved in the conflicts and commerce of Europe.

Lacon dynasty

Under Constantine I of the Lacon dynasty, Arborea paid tribute to the papacy and sponsored Camaldolese monks, in opposition to the monks of Marseille favoured by rival Cagliari. Constantine did homage to Pisa for his "giudicato" and was successor was his brother Comita II. When Pope Innocent II divided Sardinia between the sees of Pisa and Genoa in 1133, Arborea fell to the former, but Comita, for reasons of furthering Arborean independence, allied with Genoa during the subsequent civil wars of that decade. In 1145, Comita was excommunicated by Baldwin, Archbishop of Pisa, and the "giudicato" of Arborea was nominally transferred to Logudoro.

Comita's son and successor, Barison II, put Arborea back on good terms with Pisa. He married into the Catalan nobility, creating ties to Spain which culminated in Sardinia falling to the Crown of Aragon some centuries later. In 1164, Barison paid the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick Barbarossa to have him crowned King of Sardinia, but the emperor revoked that title the next year, though Barison continued to employ it. He finally left Pisa for Genoa, but his legacy was civil war. His son Peter I and grandson Hugh I finally divided the "giudicato" by the Treaty of Oristano (1192), but in the end Hugh's line, the House of Cervera (or Bas), succeeded in establishing themselves.

Catalan dynasty

While Peter II, son of Hugh, has been accused by historians of impoverishing his realm of glory, his son Marianus II expanded it substantially, even ruling over a majority of the island. During the final decades of the thirteenth century, three other "giudicati" fell into the hands of either Pisa or Genoa or one of their great families, but Arborea remained independent.

Hugh II (ruled 1321 – 1336), great-grandson of Marianus II, headed up a faction which favoured James II of Aragon, who had been promised the island by pope, as overlord. He supported the "Infante" Alfonso in his campaign (1323 – 1324) to conquer the island from Pisa and Genoa. In 1336, Hugh II was succeeded by his son Peter III (died 1345). His brother Marianus IV (ruled 1353 – 1375) was the only Sardinian ruler to be known as "the Great." He was educated at the Aragonese court, but later turned against his cultural allies and led a victorious revolt against the invaders, both Ligurian and Spanish. A period of splendour commenced. Oral traditions were codified and new legislation enacted. Army and tactics were reformed. With the exception of Cagliari, Alghero, and Sassari (then under Brancaleone Doria), Marianus conquered the whole of the island, making Arborea the strongest any "giudicato" had ever been.

Marianus was succeeded by his son Hugh III, who furthered his father's legislation and died without descendants in 1383. A republic was proclaimed, but the crown was claimed by Eleanor, elder sister of Hugh III, who was married to Brancaleone Doria. She succeeded in power in 1387. Eleanor was technically regent on behalf of her sons Frederick and, subsequently, Marianus V. Eleanor died in 1404 and Marianus in 1407: after the latter's death the succession descended to William III of Narbonne, grandson of Beatrice, Eleanor's sister. He defended the island against the Catalan troops of the Martin of Aragon, but Martin I of Sicily vanquished them in the Battle of Sanluri on 30 June 1409. Martin's sudden death made possible a recovery and occupation of Sassari and part of Logoduro, as well as reclamation of the title of Judge of Arborea by William. However, all the Arborean castles fell after a renewed Catalan offensive and Oristano fell in March 1410 without resistance.

Leonard Cubell laid claim to the title of Judge of Arborea, but was compelled in Oristano by Pedro de Torrelles to renounce the title, after which he was given the Marquisate of Oristano and County of Gucea. In 1420, Alfonso V of Aragon purchased for 100,000 gold florins the rights of the viscounts of Narbonne. Later, the Aragonese governor, Leonardo de Alagon, rebelled and was also able to beat the king's troops at Uras in 1470. However, his defeat at the Battle of Macomer (1478) put a definitive end to the independence of Arborea and Sardinia.

Curatoriae

Arborea was divided into thirteen (at times, fourteen) "curatoriae" or "partes" (sing. "curatoria" and "partis"). These were the main administrative regions, governed by "curatores" (curators) under the judge. The subdivisions of the "curatoriae" were the "villae", the inhabited centres (villages) that, altogether, probably comprised 100,000 inhabitants. The "curatoriae" were an inheritance of Byzantine government and are still recognised today as "historic regions."

The fourteen "curatoriae" of Arborea were Barbagia di Belvì, Barbagia d’Ollolai, Barigadu, Bonorzuli, Campidano di Cabras, Campidano di Milis, Campidano di Simaxis, Guilcier, Mandrolisai, Marmilla, Montis, Usellus, Valenza, and Brabaxiana.

Historiography

The history of Arborea is based on slender documentation, most of it assembled in the archives of Pisa and Genoa and viewing Arborea and the other "giudicati" through a colonial lens. John Day concentrates on attempting to reconstruct the socio-economic history; the internal social structure of Arborea still remains silent.

The evaluation of political figures has traditionally been made on the basis of military accomplishment, whereas Nowé points out that the ecclesiastical policy of the rulers of Sardinia was just as important in determining the stability, peacefulness, and long-term success of the "giudicati" in the face of colonialism.

ources

*"Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani". Rome, 1963 – Present.
*Nowé, Laura Sannia. "Dai "lumi" dalla patria Italiana: Cultura letteraria sarda". Mucchi Editore: Modena, 1996.
*Day, John. "La Sardegna sotto la dominazione pisano-genovese dal secolo XI al secolo XIV". UTET: Turin, 1987.

ee also

*List of "giudici" of Arborea


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Arborea (disambiguation) — Arborea can refer to: *Giudicato of Arborea, an historical region in Sardinia, Italy *Arborea, a town within the above giudicato *Arborea (plane), a fictional place in the Dungeons Dragons role playing game *Genus of Ediacaran (Precambrian)… …   Wikipedia

  • Arborea — otheruses4|the town in Italy|other uses|Arborea (disambiguation)Infobox CityIT img coa =arborea Stemma.png official name = Comune di Arborea name=Arborea region = Sardinia province = Oristano (OR) elevation m = area total km2 = 115 population as… …   Wikipedia

  • Giudicato of Cagliari — The Giudicato of Cagliari was one of the four Sardinian giudicati of the Middle Ages. It coverred the entire south and central east portion of the island and was composed of thirteen subdivisions called curatoriae . To its north and west lay… …   Wikipedia

  • Giudicato of Logudoro — The Giudicato of Logudoro (also known as the Giudicato of Torres after Porto Torres) is a historical state which covered the northwest portion of Sardinia from the tenth through the thirteenth century. Logudoro was one of four giudicati into… …   Wikipedia

  • Giudicato of Gallura — The Giudicato of Gallura was one of four Sardinian giudicati of the Middle Ages. These were de facto independent states ruled by judges bearing the title iudex ( giudice ). Gallura, a name which comes from gallus , meaning rooster (cock), was… …   Wikipedia

  • Giudicato of Agugliastra — The Giudicato of Agugliastra or Ogliastra was a small and short lived giudicato in Sardinia probably in the tenth and eleventh centuries. It lay south of Gallura, east of Arborea, and north of Cagliari along the Tyrrhenian Sea on the east of the… …   Wikipedia

  • Comita II of Arborea — The Giudicati of Sardinia. Comita II (or III) (died 1147) was the giudice of the Giudicato of Arborea, from 1131 until his death. He was the son of Gonario, first ruler of Arborea of the Lacon dynasty. Married Elena de Orrubu, mother of Barison… …   Wikipedia

  • Hugh I of Arborea — He became a giudice of the Giudicato of Arborea in 1185 under the regency of Ramon de Torroja, the husband of Gaia, sister of Agalbursa. Agalbursa was the widow of Barisone II. In 1192, a compromise was reached at Oristano whereby Peter di Serra …   Wikipedia

  • Marianus V of Arborea — Marianus V (1378 or 1379 – 1407) was the Judge of Arborea from 1387 until his death. His surname was Doria Cappai de Baux, the last part being a corruption of Bas Serra. Younger brother and successor of Frederick, he was a minor upon his… …   Wikipedia

  • Peter I of Arborea — Peter I (died 1214), of the Serra family, was the eldest son and successor of Barisone II of Arborea, reigning from 1186 to his death. His mother was Barisone s first wife, Pellegrina de Lacon. He was crowned King of Sardinia, the title his… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.