Castruccio Castracani Degli Antelminelli

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Castruccio Castracani Degli Antelminelli

 

Born Mar. 29, 1281, in Castruccio, near Lucca; died Sept. 3, 1328, in Lucca. Italian condottiere; Luccan signore.

Castruccio, the son of a merchant, was banished from Luccain 1300 because he was a Ghibelline. He became a condottiere forFrance and, later, for the Visconti and Scaliger families. Havingreturned to Lucca in 1314, Castruccio was proclaimed the cap-tain-general and signore of Lucca in 1316; the latter position wasfor life. He was given the title of vicar-imperial in 1320. Cas-truccio changed the Guelph constitution and ruled tyrannically.He waged war in order to expand the domain of Lucca and tocreate a Tuscan Ghibelline state. He gained control of Pistoia in1325 and Pisa in 1328; he defeated the Florentines at Altopascioin 1325. Pope John XXII excommunicated him in 1324 and1328. The German king Louis IV the Bavarian, who supportedthe Ghibellines, granted Castruccio the title of duke in 1327.Castruccio is the subject of N. Machiavelli’s The Life of Cas-truccio Castracani of Lucca.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.