Savi di Terraferma

The Savii or Savi di Terraferma ("Sages of the Mainland") were senior magistrates of the Republic of Venice, charged with supervision of the Republic's possessions in the Italian mainland (Domini di Terraferma). The Savi di Terraferma were established c. 1420, as part of the Republic's expansion into the Veneto and Lombardy, and its military confrontation with the Duchy of Milan over hegemony in northern Italy. They were five in number, and sat on the Full College (Pien Collegio), the Republic's effective cabinet. As with other higher magistracies of Venice, restrictions were placed on the eligibility to the office: the members were elected from the Venetian Senate, served a term of six months, and could not be re-elected to the same office for three months thereafter. To ensure continuity, the appointments to the office of Savio di Terraferma were staggered: three took office on 1 October, two on 1 January, three on 1 April, and two on 1 July. Like all savi, the office did not carry a salary, but could be held in tandm with other public offices.


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