Giacomo Bussolari was born to a poor family in Pavia, Italy around 1300. A natural gift for oratory augmented the modest opportunities available to him; and he found in the Augustinian order a vehicle for the expression of his ambitions. During the 1350s he was a leading figure in the city, even rising to command the city’s military during conflict with the Visconti in 1356. Yet Fortune was to turn against him, as so often happens; by 1359 the Visconti had mounted a successful campaign against Pavia, and Bussolari was ignominiously deposed.
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