Marco Polo Dies
In 1323, Polo was confined to bed, due to illness.
On January 8, 1324, despite physicians' efforts to treat him, Polo was on his deathbed. To write and certify the will, his family requested Giovanni Giustiniani, a priest of San Procolo. His wife, Donata, and his three daughters were appointed by him as co-executrices. The church was entitled by law to a portion of his estate; he approved of this and ordered that a further sum be paid to the convent of San Lorenzo, the place where he wished to be buried. He also set free a "Tartar slave" who may have accompanied him from Asia.
He divided up the rest of his assets, including several properties, between individuals, religious institutions, and every guild and fraternity to which he belonged. He also wrote-off multiple debts including 300 lire that his sister-in-law owed him, and others for the convent of San Giovanni, San Paolo of the Order of Preachers, and a cleric named Friar Benvenuto. He ordered 220 soldi be paid to Giovanni Giustiniani for his work as a notary and his prayers. The will, which was not signed by Polo, but was validated by then relevant "signum manus" rule, by which the testator only had to touch the document to make it abide to the rule of law, was dated January 9, 1324. Due to the Venetian law stating that the day ends at sunset, the exact date of Marco Polo's death cannot be determined, but it was between the sunsets of January 8 and 9, 1324.
We learn little of Marco Polo's personal or family history after this captivity; but we know that at his death he left a wife, Donata (perhaps of the Loredano family, but this is uncertain), and three daughters, Fantina and Bellela (married, the former to Marco Bragadino), and Moreta (then a spinster, but married at a later date to Ranuzzo Dolfino). One last glimpse of the traveller is gathered from his will, now in St. Mark's library. On the 9th of January 1324 the traveller, in his seventieth year, sent for a neighboring priest and notary to make his testament. We do not know the exact time of his death, but it fell almost certainly within the year 1324, for we know from a scanty series of documents, beginning in June 1325, that he had at the latter date been some time dead. He was buried, in accordance with his will, in the Church of St. Lorenzo, where the family burying-place was marked by a sarcophagus, erected by his filial care for his father Nicolo, which existed till near the end of the 16th century. On the renewal of the church in 1592 this seems to have disappeared.