Ca’ Pesaro

It was begun to a design by Longhena in 1679, as can be read in Roman numerals above a notice held in the hand of one of the statues on the front, and was completed in 1710. However, it would seem that there existed in that area an older dwelling which belonged to the Pesaros, because of a document which states that the doge Giovanni Pesaro, born in 1590, in his youth fell from his family’s palazzo in the Parish of St. Eustace. It was here that the last doge, Ludovico Manin, took refuge after his abdication. The Pesaro family, who came to Venice in 1225 from the city of that name in Romagna (where their name was Palmieri), were nobles. Many worthy men, both clergy and military, brought honour to this family. Who has not heard of Benedetto Pesaro, a high general in the navy, who conquered Cefalonia, S. Maura and Alessio, broke the Rumanian siege of Naples and died in Corfù in 1503 after honourably concluding peace? The actions of Girolamo, the son of Bendetto, are equally memorable; also those of Giacomo the bishop of Pafo, elected apostolic legate by the Pope in1501 and general of the Papal Army connected to that of the Venetians. Also Francesco, the Archbishop of Zara, then the titular patriarch of Constantinople and finally nominated by the Senate as the bishop of Brescia. He died in 1544. We should also not forget Giovanni Pesaro, made doge in 1658 and famous for the wisdom of his advice. The Pesaro family rebuilt the Church of S. Giovanni Decollato, built various other palazzi, a magnificent altar and sumptuous mausoleums in the Church of St. Mary the Glorious dei Frari and gave their name to many streets in Venice.

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