Although opera first emerged in principalities such as Florence and Mantua at the turn of the seventeenth century, the Republic of Venice was the true birthplace of opera as we know it. It was there that this genre turned into a public and commercial endeavor, the first opera theaters were built and singers became sought-after divas. Set to music by Claudio Monteverdi and Francesco Cavalli, Gian Francesco Busenello’s dramatic works offer a unique perspective into the cultural, political and aesthetic transformation of opera from an occasional courtly display to an international pop genre. The highly hierarchical order present on the courtly stage, which reflected the social structure of principalities, is replaced by the pluralistic “disorder” of the Republic: one narrative vs. multiple plots; uniform and socially defining poetic language vs. eclectic poetic language independent of social distinction; a single reading vs. multiple novel reinterpretations of literary sources. Busenello''s works, set to music by the two foremost composers of the time, represent the crowning of a new genre: republican opera.