Abstract. The Doges of Genoa: the Campofregoso family.
The name "Doge" derives from the Latin "Ducem" or "Duca" or "Duce". In its Venetian form "Doge" or "Duce" which means "Chief, Mercenary Leader", it was the title given to the leaders of the Republics of both Venice and Genoa. In Venice the title was held for a lifetime, while in Genoa, it was changed to a biennial title in 1528.
In Genoa, the family which received this title most frequently was Campofregoso, also known as Fregoso. At first they were deceitful and unscrupulous business men who became very rich trading with the Orient. When their debtors could not make payments, they opened a bank (S. George Bank) which recovered the credit owed and which got them the supremacy of the town.
During this same period there were two powerful families in Genoa: the Adorno and the Fregoso. These families alternated as the "Dogato" of Genoa.
The first ones were "Ghibellini", who were supporters of the Empire; the second ones were "Guelfi" who were linked to the Church. However, their first allegiance was towards themselves.
Among the "Campofregoso" Tomaso (Thomas) was the most important and became Doge three times: in 1415, 1421 and 1437. Although he was very rich he always strove for peace which he considered an essential component for Republic trading.
In 1522 Ottaviano Fregoso was the last Doge among the Fregoso. He was followed by Antoniotto II° Adorno who was the last "perpetual "Doge" (1527).
Genoa minting followed the medieval style with the representation of a cross on the obverse and of a castle with a stylized door on the reverse. The most important among the coins of Genoa was the "Genovino", minted immediately after the Florentine "Fiorino" (1252), but shortly before the Venetian "Ducato" (ducat). It was a coin that was very well accepted all over the "Orient" because of its constant gold weight (3.30 g). From the "genovino", they minted the "terzarola" (1/3 of genovino) and the silver "grosso" (about 2.7 g). Later, Domenico Fregoso also minted some "denari minuti" (little coins).
The coins of Genoa remained unchanged until the end of the "perpetuity of the Doges" (October 12, 1582).