Sacred Plunder: Venice and the Aftermath of the Fourth Crusade

Paperback | January 14, 2016

byDavid M. Perry

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In Sacred Plunder, David Perry argues that plundered relics, and narratives about them, played a central role in shaping the memorial legacy of the Fourth Crusade and the development of Venice’s civic identity in the thirteenth century. After the Fourth Crusade ended in 1204, the disputes over the memory and meaning of the conquest began. Many crusaders faced accusations of impiety, sacrilege, violence, and theft. In their own defense, they produced hagiographical narratives about the movement of relics—a medieval genre called translatiothat restated their own versions of events and shaped the memory of the crusade. The recipients of relics commissioned these unique texts in order to exempt both the objects and the people involved with their theft from broader scrutiny or criticism. Perry further demonstrates how these narratives became a focal point for cultural transformation and an argument for the creation of the new Venetian empire as the city moved from an era of mercantile expansion to one of imperial conquest in the thirteenth century.

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In Sacred Plunder, David Perry argues that plundered relics, and narratives about them, played a central role in shaping the memorial legacy of the Fourth Crusade and the development of Venice’s civic identity in the thirteenth century. After the Fourth Crusade ended in 1204, the disputes over the memory and meaning of the conquest beg...

David M. Perry is Associate Professor of History at Dominican University. He is a frequent contributor to CNN.com, the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Atlantic, and Al Jazeera America.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:248 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:January 14, 2016Publisher:Penn State University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0271065087

ISBN - 13:9780271065083

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Contents

List of Illustrations

Acknowledgments

Introduction

Part I: Contexts

1. Constantinople’s Relics, 1204–1261

2. Pope Innocent III and Sacrilege, 1204–1215

Part II: Texts

3. The Translatio Narratives of the Fourth Crusade

4. Interpretations

Part III: Outcomes

5. Translatio and Venice Before and After 1204

6. Translatio and the Myth of Venice

Epilogue

Notes

Bibliography

Index

Editorial Reviews

“Lucidly and insightfully argued throughout. . . . [Sacred Plunder] makes a significant contribution to our understanding of attitudes towards the Fourth Crusade, of medieval hagiographical texts and of the evolution of Venetian identity.”

—Nicky Tsougarakis, Journal of Religious History, Literature and Culture