A View on Venetian Apprenticeship through the Garzoni Database
A preliminary sample of contracts of apprenticeship from three periods in the history of early modern Venice is analysed, as recorded in the archive of the Giustizia Vecchia, a Venetian magistracy. The periods are the end of the 16th century, the 20s and the 50s of the 17th. First, the variety of professions represented in the dataset reduces over time, as the proportion of Venetian apprentices is found to increase, hinting at the city’s economy becoming more introvert over time. Secondly, apprenticeships are found to be divided into two groups: those which stipulated a salary to be paid by the master to the apprentice (circa 80%), and those which did not. The first group is likely to represent contracts used to hire workforce more than provide training. Lastly, professional profiles are introduced, as a combination of statistics which provide evidence of three groups of professions with respect to apprenticeship market dynamics. This paper is but a preliminary result of the Garzoni (GAWS) project, which will extensively study Venetian apprenticeship in the coming years.