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Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / Volume III: The fourteenth and fifteenth centuries

VIII: The Hospitallers at Rhodes, 1306-1421,   pp. 278-313 PDF (20.9 MB)

Page 311

and supplied it with food and wine; Cos was especially fertile. To the east
of Rhodes, Castellorizzo was a garrisoned lookout post; to the north, the
fortresses at Bodrum and Cos guarded the approaches to Rhodes. Unlike many
of the modest defenses elsewhere in the archipelago, these two castles enclosed
no town but were powerful isolated strongholds, partly surrounded by water.
At Cos the precep tor had to maintain twenty-five Hospitallers, ten Latin
men-at-arms, a hundred turcopoles, a doctor, and an apothecary, together
with a ship with twenty banks of rowers.65 
 In fact, while the Latin possessions in the Levant gradually shrank, Rhodes
grew stronger and, as a result, more important as a well-placed commercial
entrepôt, a base for merchants of many nations, partic ularly for the
Florentines and Catalans, who had no Levantine colony of their own.66 Although
in 1399 there were on Rhodes at least sixty-three brethren of the langue
of Provence alone, and in 1409 there were thirty-three brethren of the langue
of Auvergne there,67 the Convent had become less exclusively French; Naillac's
lieutenants at Rhodes between 1409 and 1420 were, successively, the Italian
Dominic de Alamania, the German Hesso Schlegelholtz, a Frenchman, the marshal
Lucius of Vallins, and a Catalan, the draper Anton Fluvian, who became master
in 1421. In view of the Italian mercantile rivalries in the Levant the comparative
paucity of Italians in the Convent was probably fortunate, but some became
leading figures in the business community. The Florentine John Corsini possessed
town and country property in Rhodes and lent money to the Hospital in the
time of Juan Fernández de Heredia,68 while Dragonet Clavelli, a citizen
of Rhodes, became a leading money lender and held both the Rhodian casale
of Lardos and the island of Nisyros in fief. The Hospital needed such men
to provide wealth and credit at Rhodes. 
treaty with the Ottomans is uncertain. There seems to be no evidence that
the Hospital ever held Salona, as often maintained. 
 65. Descriptions in "Relation du pélerinage a Jerusalem de Nicolas
de Martoni, notaire italien, 1394-1395," ed. E. Legrand, Revue de l'Orient
latin, III (1895), 582—586, 638— 645; Ruy Gonzalez de Clavijo
(1403), in F. Lopez Estrada, Embajada a Tamorldn (Madrid, 1943), pp. 18—24;
Description des lies de l'Archipel par Christophe Buondelmonti, ed. E. Legrand
(Paris, 1897), pp. 25—33, 62—67, 181—189, 218—222;
G. Gerola, "I Monu menti medioevali delle tredici Sporadi," Annuario delle
R. Scuola archeologica di Atene, I (1914), 169—356; II (1916), 1—101;
A. Maiuri, "I Castelli dei Cavalieri di Rodi a Cos e a Budrum (Alicarnasso),"
ibid., IV—V (1921—1922), 275—343. 
 66. A. Luttrell, "Aragoneses y Catalanes en Rodas: 1350—1430," VII
Congreso de Historia de la Corona de Aragon, II (Barcelona, 1962), 383—390.
For the end of Catalan and Florentine rule in Greece see above, chapter VII.
 67. Malta, cod. 330, folios 36r-38r; cod. 339, folios 233v-235r. 
 68. Luttrell, "Interessi fiorentini," pp. 325—326. 

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