Written for Gherardo Ortalli
Historiae was born from the meeting of a group of colleagues, students and friends gathered to celebrate the long professional commitment of Gherardo Ortalli, who in October 2013 will reach his fortieth year at Ca’ Foscari University in Venice. This volume brings together the contributions of those who have shared this path with him, in the Department of Historical Studies and then in the Department of Humanities at Ca’ Foscari, as a tribute to his intense activity, which took place between teaching and research tasks, between cultural and publishing initiatives, between collaborations and institutional responsibilities, both within the Venetian University and at other Italian and international institutes and organisations. The texts cover a broad chronological and thematic span - according to the interests of the authors, but also (for the most part) of the recipient of the collection - distributed, from the early Middle Ages to the contemporary age, between the history of institutions and society, of culture and social commitment, between iconography and philological investigation, between anthropology and the environment. A heartfelt thank you to all those who wished to take part in this initiative and to the friends and colleagues from other universities and institutes who were unable to take part, but who nevertheless welcomed and supported it. We trust, however, that this tribute will be appreciated, at least for the intention that moved it, especially by its recipient, certain that we are not celebrating a milestone, but the start of a new season of commitments and projects. We believe we are interpreting the will of all in wishing him, for this, many good wishes.