La sua famiglia si chiamò in seguito Gradenigo.

Fu eletto dopo la deposizione di Giovanni I Partecipazio, avvenuta nell'836.

Apparteneva ad una nobile famiglia istriana.

Non sapeva leggere e scrivere pertanto i documenti e gli editti venivano firmati con il signum manus.

Era stato eletto procuratore di San Marco il 7 maggio 830.

Il suo dogado fu contraddistinto dalle lotte ai pirati, che infestavano le acque dell’Adriatico (facendo crescere l’immagine dei veneziani come popolo amante della libertà e capace di riportare l’ordine), dalle guerre a fianco dei bizantini contro i saraceni che avevano preso Bari e Taranto (tale impegno gli fruttò la riconoscenza del basileus, il quale lo gratificò con due onorificenze: spatario e ipato), e dal Pactum Lotharii.

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