[00:03.32]A noble gangster
[00:12.20]How did Hawkwood make money in times of peace?
[00:17.89]There was a time when the owners of shops and businesses in Chicago
[00:22.67]had to pay large sums of money to gangsters in return for 'protection'.
[00:28.48]If the money was not paid promptly,
[00:30.93]the gangsters would quickly put a man out of business by destroying his shop.
[00:37.04]Obtaining 'protection money' is not a modern crime.
[00:41.66]As long ago as the fourteenth century,an Englishman,Sir John Hawkwood,
[00:47.75]made the remarkable discovery
[00:49.47]that people would rather pay large sums of money than have their life work destroyed by gangsters.
[00:56.23]Six hundred years ago,
[00:57.61]Sir John Hawkwood arrived in Italy with a band of soldiers and settled near Florence.
[01:04.44]He soon made a name for himself and came to be known to the Italians as Giovanni Acuto.
[01:12.09]Whenever the Italian city-states were at war with each other,
[01:15.68]Hawkwood used to hire his soldiers to princes who were willing to pay the high price he demanded.
[01:22.36]In times of peace,
[01:23.82]when business was bad,
[01:25.66]Hawkwood and his men would march into a city-state,
[01:29.27]and after burning down a few farms,
[01:31.99]would offer to go away if protection money was paid to them.
[01:36.52]Hawkwood made large sums of money in this way.
[01:40.57]In spite of this, the Italians regarded him as a sort of hero.
[01:45.73]When he died at the age of eighty,
[01:48.58]the Florentines gave him a state funeral
[01:52.05]and had a picture painted which was dedicated to the memory of 'the most valiant soldier and most notable leader,
[01:59.16]Signor Giovanni Haukodue'.