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The Rhetoric of the Frontier of Christendom in the Diplomacy of Renaissance Ragusa

Lovro Kunčević orcid id ; Zavod za povijesne znanosti HAZU, Dubrovnik, Hrvatska

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 394 Kb

str. 179-211

preuzimanja: 872



One extremely important but neglected question concerning the history of Ragusan diplomacy is that of its rhetoric. This article seeks to analyse the most important rhetorical strategy of Ragusan diplomacy, traditionally directed towards the Christian Europe: the endlessly repeated claim that Ragusa, situated on the frontier with the Orthodox “schismatics” and Muslim “infidels”, performs a unique and extremely important mission in the interest of Catholic and Christian religion. The first goal of this article is to reconstruct the historical development of this rhetoric, starting from its first appearance in the diplomacy of the late fourteenth century all the way to its full articulation in the sixteenth. The second goal is to analyse the types of situations in which it was used and the purposes for which it served, since this rhetoric was quickly turned into a standard and obviously very successful diplomatic tool. The third goal is to put the Ragusan rhetoric in context, comparing it to the diplomatic rhetoric of other Renaissance states situated on the frontier of religions, such as the Iberian kingdoms, Poland, Hungary and Malta. Finally, the article contains a case-study about the reception of Ragusan rhetoric, an attempt to reconstruct a fierce diplomatic conflict between the Venetian and Ragusan diplomacy during the War of Cyprus concerning the question whether the city was a champion or betrayer of Christianity.

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