The Last Doge of Venice

Portrait of Doge Ludovico Manin, Sala dello Scrutinio, Palazzo Ducale, Venice

Exactly 220 years ago, on May 12th 1797, Ludovico Giovanni Manin (1725-1802) entered the annals of history by becoming the last doge of Venice. 

Manin had been elected doge on March 9th 1789. His abdication, which signalled the end of the ancient Republic of Venice, was forced by Napoleon Bonaparte, whose army had invaded Italy. 

After his abdication Manin withdrew from society, living the life of a recluse. He died, three years later, on October 24th, 1802 and was interred in the family tomb in the Chiesa degli Scalzi. The tomb slab bears the simple inscription Manini Cineres (Manin's Ashes).

Manin's portrait can be seen in the Sala dello Scrutinio in the Palazzo Ducale. It is the final image in the frieze of ducal portraits, which runs along the top of three sides of the room.