submitted by Peter Makarthis on 09.11.2008
Bartolomeo Comino – Kytherian or not Kytherian that is the question.
Shakespearian as Hamlet and Othello, Bartolomeo Comino plays a significant dual role as the Secretary of the Council of Ten and Secretary of the Inquisitors in the Serene Republic of Venice from 1609-1619.
The cold war power play between Spain and Serene Republic of Venice in the early 1600’s appears to have a similar scenario to East West cold war activities of post World War 2 adversaries.
Jonathan Walker the author of Pistols! Treason! Murder! The Rise and Fall of a Master Spy, details an account of the Venetian master spy Gerolamo Vano in the intrigues between Venice and Spain to control commerce and shipping lanes of the eastern Mediterranean. Little appears to have changed in the region during the past 400 years.
The selection of Bartolomeo Comino by the Serene Republic of Venice has a sound basis. Appoint as Secretary, an eminent person not connected by blood line to the factions of the Venetian aristocracy however connected to the Republic, in a neutral role.
Bartolomeo Comino’s origins are unclear however he is clearly a Greek. The question remains – from where on the Peloponnesus? The most probably origins are, either the Venetian stronghold of Monemvasia or the cittadini of Chora on the island of Cerigo.
Perhaps the intrigue of Ian Flemming’s, James Bond has some foundation in this account of the spymaster Gerolamo Vano and his controller Bartolomeo Comino.
Observations from Pistols! Treasons! Murder! The Rise and Fall of a Master Spy by Jonathan Walker – 2007
Teacher, journalist, poet and author, Sydney NSW Australia
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