Nicolò Donato

This article is about the Doge of Venice. For the 20th century film director, see Nicolo Donato (film director).

Nicolò Donà or Nicolò Donato (January 28, 1539 – May 9, 1618) was the 93rd Doge of Venice, reigning for only 35 days, from his election on April 10, 1618 until his death.


The son of Giovanni Donà and Isabetta Morosini, Donato was born in Venice and studied for a time in Padua before going into trade. He gained a huge fortune, but remained stingy his entire life. He never married, and ultimately left his fortune to his brother Francesco and nephew Pietro.

Donato proved unwilling to spend the vast sums of money required to gain high office in the Republic of Venice. However, in 1617–1618, the Spanish Ambassador to Venice, Alfonso de la Cueva, 1st Marquis of Bedmar launched a plot to destabilize the Venetian Republic in order to allow Spanish troops to take over Venice. In the midst of this crisis, the reigning Doge, Giovanni Bembo, died on March 16, 1618.

Donato was elected doge on April 10, 1618, probably by paying bribes. He tried to eliminate his reputation for stinginess by throwing the traditional lavish banquet to celebrate his election, but this proved unavailing when his parents turned a number of his relatives away from the feast in order to save money.

He died in Venice 35 days after his election, with the Bedmar Conspiracy still raging.[1]


  1. David Sanderson Chambers; Jennifer Fletcher; Brian S. Pullan (2001). Venice: A Documentary History, 1450-1630. University of Toronto Press. pp. 4–. ISBN 978-0-8020-8424-8.

This article is based on this article from Italian Wikipedia.

Political offices
Preceded by
Giovanni Bembo
Doge of Venice
Succeeded by
Antonio Priuli

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