Sobor Sv. Marka, [Venet︠s︡ii︠a︡]
The Mediterranean Sea was the hub of transport, trade and cultural links between three continents: Western Asia, North Africa, and Southern Europe. The history of the cultures and people of the Mediterranean region is important for understanding the origin and development of the Mesopotamian, Egyptian, Canaanite, Phoenician, Hebrew, Carthaginian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Ottoman, Christian and Islamic cultures. The Italian "Repubbliche Marinare" (Maritime Republics) of Venice, Genoa, Amalfi and Pisa developed their own "empires" in the Mediterranean shores. The Islamic states had never been major naval powers, and trade from the east to Europe was soon in the hands of Italian traders, especially the Genoese and the Venetians, who profited immensely from it. The Republic of Pisa and later the Republic of Ragusa used diplomacy to further trade and maintained a libertarian approach in civil matters to further sentiment in its inhabitants. The republic of Venice got to dominate the eastern Mediterranean shores after the Fourth Crusade. In 1347 the Black Death spread from Constantinople across the mediterranean basin. In 1453, the Byzantine Empire was extinguished with the fall of Constantinople.
Many historians agree that the original population of Venice consisted of refugees from Roman cities near Venice such as Padua, Aquileia, Treviso, Altino and Concordia (modern Portogruaro) and from the undefended countryside, who were fleeing from waves of Germanic and Hun invasions. Between year 166 to 168, the Quadi and Marcomanni destroyed the main center in the area, the current Oderzo. The Roman defenses were again overthrown in the early 5th century by the Visigoths and, some 50 years later, by the Huns led by Attila. The last and most enduring immigration into the north of the Italian peninsula, that of the Lombards in 568, left the Eastern Roman Empire a small strip of coast in the current Veneto, including Venice.
Italian Time Travel Trip 1906 Italy was getting ready for the 1908 Summer Olympics when Mount Vesuvius erupted. It became active in January and culminated with an eruption on April 5th, when Vesuvius killed over 100 people and ejected the most lava ever recorded from a Vesuvian eruption ever. Government funds previously allocated for the Summer Olympics had to be diverted to the reconstruction of Naples, requiring a new location for the Olympics to be found. April 10 – The lava flow from Mount Vesuvius, which had almost ceased, starts again in the direction of Torre Annunziata; reached the cemetery of that town and then turned in the direction of Pompeii (again!). April 28 – The Milan International world's fair opens in Milan. It welcomed 4,012,776 visits and covered 100 hectares (250 acres). May 6 – The first Targa Florio, an open road endurance automobile race, starts in the mountains of Sicily near Palermo. The race was initiated by Vincenzo Florio and is considered to be the oldest sports car racing event.