The Castle of Fratta

by Ippolito Nievo

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Characters Discussed

Carlo Altoviti

Carlo Altoviti (ahl-toh-VEE-tee), a poor relation in the feudal Fratta family and the narrator. He becomes an honored member of the family and a patriot who lives to see the Castle of Fratta reduced to rubble and the Frattas dispersed. In his old age, he returns to Fratta to write his memoirs.


Giovanni (gee-oh-VAHN-nee), the count of Fratta, the austere head of the Fratta family.


Cleonice (kleh-oh-NEE-chee), the countess of Fratta, Count Giovanni’s haughty wife.


Clara, Count Giovanni’s grave, beautiful daughter, who finally enters a convent.


Pisana (pee-ZAH-nah), Count Giovanni’s fascinating younger daughter, loved by Carlo Altoviti. She eventually becomes his mistress.

Aquilina Provedoni

Aquilina Provedoni (ah-kwee-LEE-nah proh-veh-DOH-nee), Carlo Altoviti’s wife.

Todero Altoviti

Todero Altoviti (toh-DEH-roh), Carlo’s father. Deserted by Carlo’s mother, he disappears. When he has grown wealthy in trade he returns, hoping to establish a prominent family. His hopes are dashed with the capitulation of Venice to the French.

Monsignor Orlando

Monsignor Orlando, a stupid, gluttonous priest, Count Giovanni’s brother.

Lucilio Vianello

Lucilio Vianello (lew-chee-LEE-oh vee-ah-NEHL-loh), a young doctor. He is in love with Clara Fratta. After the fall of the patricians, she refuses to return from the convent and marry him.

Leopardo Provedoni

Leopardo Provedoni, Carlo Altoviti’s friend.

Antonio Provedoni

Antonio Provedoni, Leopardo’s father, the mayor of the Commune.


Doretta, the daughter of the chancellor of Venchieredo, Leopardi Provedoni’s wife.

Raimondo di Venchieredo

Raimondo di Venchieredo (dee VEHN-kee-ehr-eh-doh), Doretta’s lover.

The count of Venchieredo

The count of Venchieredo, Raimondo’s father, sentenced to prison for laying siege to Fratta.

Alberto Partistagno

Alberto Partistagno (pahr-tees-TAH-noh), a young nobleman, Clara Fratta’s suitor.

Giulio del Ponte

Giulio del Ponte (jee-EW-lee-oh), a young poet, another of Clara’s suitors, later in love with Pisana Fratta.


Aglaura, Carlo Altoviti’s half sister.

Spiro Apostulos

Spiro Apostulos (SPEE-roh AHPOHS-tew-lohs), Aglaura’s husband.

Mauro Navagero

Mauro Navagero (MAH-ew-roh nah-vah-JEE-roh), an aged Fratta kinsman, Pisana Fratta’s husband.

Almoro Frumier

Almoro Frumier (ahl-MOH-roh frew-MEE-ehr), a Venetian senator, a Fratta kinsman.

The Spaccafumo

The Spaccafumo (spah-kah-FEW-moh), a bandit.

Father Pendola

Father Pendola, a Jesuit priest and a political intriguer in the Venetian Republic.

Lady Badoer

Lady Badoer (bah-DOH-ehr), Clara and Pisana Fratta’s grandmother, who dies of atrocities committed by the soldiers of Napoleon.

Captain Sandracca

Captain Sandracca, captain of the militia at Fratta.

Amilcare Dossi

Amilcare Dossi (ahmeel-KAH-reh DOHS-see), a young political liberal who influences Carlo Altoviti.

Ettore Carafa

Ettore Carafa (eht-TOH-ray kah-RAH-fah), a lover of Pisana Fratta.

Napoleon Bonaparte

Napoleon Bonaparte, the emperor of France.

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