Twenty third Doge of Venice (976-978), born on date unknown, died in 997. During his tenure ducal, considered transitional, reigned for fear that the policy of engagement developed by the Serenissima aniquilase its independence.
Pietro Orseolo was elected Doge as a successor of Pietro IV Candiano, probably for two reasons: because he was a descendant of the Roman ursia gens and in attack and fire to the Palace ducal that toppled Candiano, was hurt the House of Orseolo, adjacent. His only political act was to assign to the wife of his predecessor, Waldrada, the possessions of the family of Candiano, as a means not to antagonise the Empire, Waldrada was protected by Adelaide, widow of Otto I. His main work was the reconstruction of Venice.
From his marriage to Felicia Malipero had two children: Pietro, who was later dux; and a woman, who married Giovanni Morosini, a family very rich and noble. Man extremely religious, the night of September 1, 978 fled from Venice dressed in monk's habit and withdrew to a monastery in the Pyrenees, perhaps Cuxa. He was canonized by the Catholic Church and later proclaimed Saint. Today, the shrine of his wife is part of the treasure of San Marcos and is guarded in the basilica. He was succeeded by Vitale Candiano.
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