We should now discuss the independent Italian states. In that their governments did not expel the Jews, they demonstrated a more realistic attitude. But they did take preventive measures with regard to them, for which the sovereign pontiffs both set the example and gave the signal. The condition of the Jews worsened everywhere, as the power of Jewish banking declined: the phenomena are certainly connected, but not through any simple direct relationship. In view of the magnitude of the subject, it seems best to consider only the three great centres of Florence, Rome and Venice, in that order. Each provided a different solution to the social problem of pawnbroking. A comparison of these solutions discloses the manifold and often changeable factors which governed the fate of the dispersed people.