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The grape harvester represents September. Tel 83 Museum 10am—4pm daily. Sightseeing is limited during services. The remains are housed in the altar. The Tetrarchs This charming sculptured group in porphyry 4thcentury Egyptian is thought to represent Diocletian, Maximian, Valerian and Constance. Collectively they were the tetrarchs, appointed by Diocletian to help rule the Roman Empire. The so-called Pilasters of Acre in fact came from a 6th-century church in Constantinople.

Central Doorway Carvings. Horses of St Mark. This oriental extravaganza, embellished over a period of six centuries with fabulous mosaics, marble and carvings, made a fitting location for the ceremonies of the Serene Republic. It was here that the doge was presented to the city following his election, that heads of State, popes, princes and ambassadors were received, and where sea captains came to pray for protection before embarking on epic voyages.

The Porta dei Fiori or Gate of Flowers is decorated with 13thcentury reliefs. North Aisle The gallery leading off the museum affords visitors a splendid overall view of the mosaics. Pentecost Dome Showing the Apostles touched by tongues of flame, the Pentecost Dome was decorated in the 12th century. Main entrance. Here, God creates the fish and birds. For hotels and restaurants in this region see pp—33 and pp—7 The baptistry is also called Chiesa dei Putti church of the cherubs.

The sacristy door always locked has fine bronze panels by Sansovino, including portraits of himself with Titian and Aretino. Ascension Dome A mosaic of Christ in Glory decorates the enormous central dome. This masterpiece was created by 13th-century Venetian craftsmen, who were strongly influenced by the art and architecture of Byzantium. South aisle The Altar of the Sacrament is surrounded by mosaics of the parables and miracles of Christ dating from the late 12th or early 13th century. Atrium Mosaics.

Treasury A repository for precious booty from Constantinople, the Treasury also houses ancient Italian works of art, such as this 12th- or 13thcentury incense burner. Ascension and Pentecost Domes. The mosaics, the rich store of eastern bounty, the mysterious lighting and the sheer size of the place create a feeling of confusion for first-time visitors. Make several visits, ideally at different times of the day. The mosaics look especially splendid when the church is fully illuminated am—pm Mon—Fri, am—4pm Sat, 2—4pm Sun.

Avoid the crowds by visiting early in the morning or in the evening. If a mass is in progress visitors are expected to be silent and will only be able to visit certain areas. The earliest, dating from the 12th century, were the work of mosaicists from the east. Their techniques were adopted by Venetian craftsmen who gradually took over the decoration, combining Byzantine inspiration with western influences.

During the 16th century, sketches and cartoons by Tintoretto, Titian, Veronese, and other leading artists were reproduced in mosaic. The original iconographical scheme, depicting stories from the Testaments, has more or less been preserved by careful restoration. Among the finest mosaics in the basilica are those decorating the 13th-century central Dome of the Ascension and the 12th-century Dome of the Pentecost over the nave. The pavimento, or basilica floor, spreads out like an undulating Turkish carpet. Mosaics, made of marble, porphyry and glass are used to create complex and colourful geometric patterns and beautiful scenes of beasts and birds.

Some of these scenes are allegorical. The one in the left transept of two cocks carrying a fox on a stick was designed to symbolize cunning vanquished by vigilance. The scenes depict Old Testament stories, starting at the southern end with the Genesis Cupola showing 26 detailed episodes of the Creation , to the Stories of Joseph and of Moses in the domes at the north end. The figures of saints on either side of the main doorway date from the 11th century and are among the earliest mosaics in the church.

Just in front of the central doorway there is a lozenge of porphyry to mark the spot where the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa was obliged to make peace with Pope Alexander III in see p It was from this panoramic balcony that doges and dignitaries once looked down on ceremonies taking place in the square. The original gilded bronze horses, housed in a room at the far end of the museum, were stolen from the top of the Hippodrome ancient racecourse in Constantinople in but their origin, either Roman or Hellenistic, remains a mystery. Also on show are medieval The Quadriga, the original gilded bronze horses in the museum S A N M A R C O Noah and the Flood — atrium mosaics from the 13th century illuminated manuscripts, fragments of ancient mosaics and antique tapestries.

To its left the Mascoli Chapel, used in the early 17th century by the confraternity of Mascoli men , is decorated with scenes from the life of the Virgin Mary. The third chapel in the left transept is home to the icon of the Madonna of Nicopeia. Looted in , she was formerly carried into battle at the head of the Byzantine army. Under his direction the baptistry was decorated with outstanding mosaics depicting scenes from the lives of Christ and John the Baptist. Sansovino, who designed the font, is buried by the altar. The adjoining Zen Chapel currently closed to the public originally formed part of the atrium.

It became a funeral chapel for Cardinal Zen in in return for his bequest to the State. In the left transept of the basilica the Chapel of St Isidore, normally accessible only for worship, was also built by Dandolo. This jewel-spangled altarpiece situated behind the high altar consists of enamel paintThe revered icon of the Nicopeia ings on gold foil, Madonna, once a war insignia enclosed within a gilded silver Gothic frame. Today, of the precious stones, most of the treasures are but the screen still gleams housed in a room whose with pearls, rubies, remarkably thick walls sapphires and amethysts.

Above reliquary made in the the high altar the form of a five-domed imposing green marble basilica see p The baldacchino is supported sanctuary, with over by finely carved alabaster The archangel Michael, a Byzantine icon from reliquaries, is normally columns featuring scenes the 11th century in the Treasury open to the public. The existing palace owes its external appearance to the building work of the 14th and early 15th centuries.

The designers broke with tradition by perching the bulk of the pink Verona marble palace on lace-like Istrian stone arcades, with a portico supported by columns below. The result is a light and airy masterpiece of Gothic architecture. Arco Foscari The Adam and Eve figures on this triumphal arch in the courtyard are copies of the 15thcentury originals by Antonio Rizzo.

Porta della Carta This 15th-century Gothic gate was the principal entrance to the palace. From it, a vaulted passageway leads to the Arco Foscari and the internal courtyard. It was on the landing at the top that the doges were crowned with the glittering zogia. Map 7 C2. Tel 90 Last adm: 90 mins before closing. Bridge of Sighs The famous bridge once crossed by offenders on their way to the State interrogators. Ponte della Paglia see p Main entrance Adam and Eve with the serpent are depicted in stone on the corner of the Piazzetta.

The power of the Serenissima is ever present in the large and allegorical historical paintings which embellish the walls and ceilings of the splendid halls and chambers. These ornate rooms are testament to the glory of the Venetian Republic, and were designed to impress and overawe visiting ambassadors and dignitaries. Colonnade Sunlight streams through the arches of the Loggia on the first floor of the palace. Sala del Maggior Consiglio. The arched ceiling is embellished with gilded stucco by Alessandro Vittoria.

Third floor The Sala del Consiglio dei Dieci has a ceiling decorated with paintings by Veronese —4.

Sala dello Scudo The walls of this room are covered with maps of the world. In the centre are two huge 18thcentury globes. First floor Second floor. Sala del Maggior Consiglio The first 76 doges, with the exception of the traitor Marin Falier, are portrayed on a frieze round the upper walls of the room.

Prisons These 16th-century cells were mainly used for petty offenders. Serious criminals were lodged in the dank pozzi wells. It was from these cells that Casanova made his spectacular escape in Tours are available in Italian, English and French. Each is limited to 25 people and lasts for 75 minutes. The rooms are on four levels, and they all have name boards carrying an explanation of their function in Italian and English.

The latest equipment available is an up-to-date infrared audioguide, which can be hired for a commentary on the whole palace or just the areas that are of particular interest. Allow plenty of time for the visit, and try to take a break at the coffee shop. Located at water level, it affords evocative views of gondolas gliding past in the canal. It takes its name, however, from the elaborate gilt stucco vault, which was added by Alessandro Vittoria —8. The first room, the Sala delle Quattro Porte, was completely rebuilt after the fire, its ceiling designed by Andrea Palladio and frescoed by Tintoretto.

The next room, the Anticollegio, was the waiting room. The most ornate is masterly Rape of Europa the Sala degli Scarlatti, with a , opposite the window, richly carved gilt ceiling, a is one of the most fireplace c. Antonio and Off the AnticolTullio Lombardo legio, the Sala del and a relief Collegio was the —21 by hall where the Pietro Lombardo doge and his of Doge Leonardo counsellors met to Loredan at the receive ambassafeet of the Virgin.

Scudo, or map A bocca di leone used for denouncing tax evaders Embellishing the room, contains magnificent ceiling maps and charts. The wall and ceiling paintings, by pupils of Tintoretto or the master himself, are further propaganda for the Republic. By the midth century the Napoleon pilfered some of the Veroneses from the ceiling but Great Council had around two of the finest found their 2, members.

Any Venetian of high birth over 25 was way back here in Age entitled to a seat — with the and Youth and Juno Offering exception of those married to the Ducal Crown to Venice a commoner. From , by both — The huge, highly which links the palace to wooden door restored work what were known as the New here leads to the called Paradise Prisons, built between rooms of the —90 occuand Measuring palace, just below the leaded 7. These Age and Youth prisons. This is the largest paintings in cells are hardly inviting but —54 by Veronese route taken by the world.

For a prisoners here were far more those on the Secret man in his late comfortable than the crimiItinerary. Visitors on the Secret of Venice The other Visits end with the offices the second floor, along the 42 doges are portrayed in the of the Avogaria, where the hallway and past the Sala del Sala dello Scrutinio, where state prosecutors avogadori Guariento with fresco new doges were nominated. A chamber of monumental proportions, it was here that the Great Council convened to vote on constitutional questions, to pass laws and elect the top officials of the Serene Republic.

Nearby is the Ateneo Veneto, formerly a scuola whose members had the unenviable role of escorting prisoners to the scaffold. The narrow streets around these sights have some wonderfully exotic little shops, while the more recent Calle Larga XXII Marzo further south boasts big names in Italian fashion. The quarter in general has some excellent restaurants but, being San Marco, the prices in the majority of establishments are fairly steep. La Fenice The opera house gained its name the phoenix after a fire in This is the route taken by those fortunate enough to arrive for their night out by gondola.

La Fenice. Today the street is best known for its trendy designer boutiques. Its shops now sell exotic clothes. Map 7 A3. Tel 06 Founded in by the late Giuseppe Completed in , it is covered in grimy statues, swags Cipriani, it was financed by a and busts. John Ruskin, in a Bostonian called Harry who characteristic anti-Baroque thought Venice had a dearth outrage, described it of decent bars. They chose a as the clumsiest storeroom at the Grand Canal church in Venice. The bar became the most popular venue in Venice, Mississippi Valley. His shares collapsed in in the notopatronized by royalty, film rious South Sea Bubble, and stars and heads of state.

Aesthetically, the place is unremarkable and there is no terrace for meals alfresco. Ridotto 0 The external stairway of the Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo external stairway, which is currently closed for renovation. In Venetian dialect bovolo means snail shell, appropriate to the spiral shape of the stairway. There is also a collection of Byzantine well-heads.

Tel 02 In an effort to control the gambling mania that swept Venice in the s, the State allowed Marco Dandolo to use his palace as the first public gaming house in Europe. In the Ridotto was opened, with the proviso that players came disguised in a mask. In the old Palazzo Dandolo was converted into a theatre.

Now restored, it is part of the Hotel Monaco and Grand Canal see p Map 7 A2. Map 6 F3. Tel Inside is a tiny museum of church ornaments and paintings including The Sacred Family attributed to Rubens and two works by Tintoretto. Box office Tel 24 Built in in Classical style, it was one of several privately owned theatres showing plays and operas to audiences from all strata of society. In December a fire destroyed the interior but a year later it was resurrected, just like the mythical bird, the phoenix fenice which is said to have arisen from its ashes.

Now beautifully rebuilt, La Fenice shares the concert and opera season with the Malibran Theatre near Rialto. Throughout the 19th century the name of La Fenice was linked with great Italian composers. Also known as Campo Francesco Morosini after the 17th-century doge who once lived here, this campo is one of the most spacious in the city. Bullfights were staged until , when a stand fell and killed some of the spectators.

It was also a venue for balls and Carnival festivities. At the southern end of the square the austere-looking Palazzo Pisani, overlooking the Campiello Pisani, has been the Conservatory of Music since the end of the 19th century. Music wafts from its open windows all through the year. On the opposite La Fenice, rebuilt after it was destroyed by fire in side of the square No. Tel 04 Built in the 14th century and radically altered in the 15th, the church has a notable carved portal by Bartolomeo Bon and a campanile with a typical Venetian tilt.

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The most notable works of art, including some paintings by Tintoretto, are housed in the damp sacristy. The present church was designed by Giorgio Spavento in the early 16th century, and continued by Tullio Lombardo and Jacopo Sansovino. The end of the right transept is dominated by a vast monument to Caterina Cornaro, Queen of Cyprus see p Executed by the sculptor Bernardino Contino in —84, the tomb shows the queen handing over her kingdom to the doge.

Campo San Bartolomeo o Map 7 B1. One of his inventions was the Fortuny Dome which is used in theatre performances to create the illusion of sky. Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo, or Don Mariano as he liked to be called, was born in in Granada and moved to Venice in In the early 20th century he purchased the Palazzo Pesaro, a late Gothic palazzo that had originally been owned by the fabulously rich and influential Pesaro family.

Fortuny spent the remainder of his life here and both the house and its contents were bequeathed to the city by his wife in The large rooms and portego make a splendid and appropriate setting for the precious Fortuny fabrics. Close to the Rialto, the square of San Bartolomeo bustles with life, particularly in the early evening when young Venetians rendezvous here.

His statue, in a fitting spot for a writer who drew his inspiration from daily social intercourse, is by Antonio del Zotto San Salvatore i Campo San Salvatore. Tel 24 The interior of this church is an excellent example of Venetian Renaissance architecture. Linking Piazza San Marco with the Rialto, it is made from a string of narrow, San Giorgio Maggiore s bustling alleys, lined by small a shops and boutiques.

The Campo San Zulian. John Evelyn described it as am—pm daily. Its in cages. Today all this has interior features gilded been replaced with fashwoodwork, 16th- and 17thions, footwear and glass. The central end, the relief over panel of the frescoed the first archway on ceiling portrays The the left portrays the Apotheosis of St woman who in Julian, painted accidentally in by Palma stopped a revolt.

They Tommaso Rangone Tommaso Rangone. Supper and Gathering of the Manna both In the Chapel of Map 8 D4. Campanile his son Domenico. Appearing like a stage set Centuries ago Beneacross the water from the dictine monks learning and a residence for Piazzetta, the little island of occupied the origi- eminent foreign visitors. San Giorgio Maggiore has nal monastery, Following the Fall of the been captured on canvas which was rebuilt Republic in see p48 the countless times.

Within the see p There is also an chancel walls: The Last on the island of the same name evocative open-air theatre. The bustle of the and Santa Croce, bormarket gives way to a maze dered by the upper of narrow alleys opening on sweep of the Grand Canal, to squares. Focal points are were both named after the spacious Campo San churches which stood within Polo, the Frari church and their boundaries. The first the neighbouring Scuola di inhabitants are said to have San Rocco.

When streets and squares where markets were established in the 11th you will see the humbler side of Venecentury, the quarter became the com- tian life. Its grandest palazzi line the mercial hub of Venice. San Polo is still Grand Canal. Streets are no longer lined with stalls selling spices and fine fabrics, but the food markets and pasta shops are a colourful sight.

The old-fashioned standing-only bars called bacari are packed with locals. In contrast, Riva del Vin to the south, by the Grand Canal, is strictly tourist territory. San Cassiano Inside this church is a carved altar and a Crucifixion by Tintoretto o 4 n ca sa ss ia n ca n sa o po an m ssi ca ca di o d cr is d ti ca ll ei t d b ca bo tt er i c ec ar ie ra m pa ne c lo el i pi izz m r ca lb a e e r e rio dell sa lv ia ti Ponte Storto is crooked, like many bridges in the city.

It leads under a portico to Calle Stretta, a narrow alley that is only 1 m 3 ft wide in places. Rialto Markets. Rialto Bridge A beloved landmark of the Grand Canal, the bridge marks the geographical centre of the city. The balustrades afford fine views of the canal 1 n de ga ia n ll ru ch a li ca c ve o v ia ru gi sa ez 0 metres 75 n ta c fm.

Rialto Markets The Rialto markets have been in operation for centuries. Map 7 A1. The Rialto bridge has been a busy part of the city for centuries. Stone bridges were built in Venice as early as the 12th century, but it was not until , after the collapse, decay or sabotage of earlier wooden structures, that a solid stone bridge was designed for the Rialto. One of the early wood crossings collapsed in under the weight of spectators at the wedding ceremony of the Marchese di Ferrara.

Michelangelo, Andrea Palladio and Jacopo Sansovino were among the eminent contenders, but after months of deliberation it was the aptly named Antonio da Ponte who won the commission. The bridge was built between and and, until , when the Accademia Bridge was constructed, this remained the only means of crossing the Grand Canal on foot. Map 3 A5. Tel 47 San Polo. The first church to stand on this site was allegedly founded in the 5th century, making it the oldest church in Venice.

The present building dates from the 11th—12th centuries, with major restoration in The original Gothic portico and huge hour clock are the most striking features. The crouching stone figure on the far side of the square is the so-called Gobbo hunchback of the Rialto.

In the 16th century this was a welcome sight for minor offenders who were forced to run the gauntlet from Piazza San Marco to this square at the Rialto. Venetians have come to the Erberia to buy fresh produce for hundreds of years. Heavily laden barges arrive at dawn and offload their crates on to the quayside by the Grand Canal. In the adjoining fish market are sole, sardines, skate, squid, crabs, clams and other species of seafood and fish.

To see it all in full swing you must arrive early in the morning — by noon the vendors are packing up. Until the 19th century this was the only link between the two sides of the Grand Canal. External balustraded footpath The height of 7. Map 2 F5. The Medieval Church of San Cassiano is a bizarre mix of architectural styles. Of the original church, which was restored in the 19th century, only the campanile survives. The campo in which the church stands was notorious for prostitutes in the s.

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Campo San Polo 5 Map 6 F1. This wide open space is also a haven for local youngsters, who ride bikes, rollerskate or play football. Such activities would not have gone down well in the 17th century — a plaque on the apse of the church, dated , forbids all games or selling merchandise on pain of prison, galley service or exile. Cross by Giandomenico Tiepolo. The spacious square of San Polo has traditionally been host to spectacular events. As far back as the 15th century it was the venue for festivities, masquerades, ceremonies, balls and bullbaiting.

He had taken refuge in Venice Campo San Polo. Map 6 F1. Carlo Goldoni —93 after brutally killing his cousin Tel 04 Alessandro, Duke of Florence. Map 6 E1. Yet it is worth Palazzo Soranzo. Goldoni was born in lions at the foot of the 14thby the Soranzo family. The house, which has northwest corner No. He collection of theatrical was thrown out of his memorabilia. The lodgings when his enchanting courtyard English hostess read has a 15th-century his manuscript of The open stairway and a Desire and Pursuit magnificent wellhead, of the Whole — a which features carved cruel satirization lions and a coat of arms of English society A lion at the foot of the campanile, Church of San Polo bearing a hedgehog.

The first church was built by Franciscan friars in —, but was replaced by a larger building which was completed by the midth century. The interior is striking for its sheer size and for the quality of its works of art. These include masterpieces by Titian and Giovanni Bellini see pp26—7 , a statue by Donatello and a number of imposing monuments to famous Venetians. The campanile is 80 m ft high, the tallest in the city after that of San Marco. Foscari Monument Doge Foscari set a record by reigning for 34 years — Rood Screen Pietro Lombardo and Bartolomeo Bon carved this and decorated it with marble figures.

The floorplan pinpoints 12 highlights that should not be missed. Map 6 D1. The former monastery, which houses the State Archives, has two cloisters, one in the style of Sansovino, another designed by Palladio. Tel 48 Sharing the little square with the celebrated Scuola Grande di San Rocco is the church of the same name. Designed by Bartolomeo Bon in and largely rebuilt in , the exterior is a mix of architectural styles. Map 6 D2. Tel 58 The artist, Gian Antonio Fumiani, took 24 years — to achieve this masterpiece, but then he allegedly fell to his death from the scaffolding.

Map 5 C1. Tel 21 The interior, decorated with 17th-century paintings, is the resting place of Francesco Morosini d. Tel 71 82 The complex, just north of the Frari see pp—3 , has a church, scuola and courtyard. The main hall of the Scuola is reached via a splendid 15thcentury double stairway by Mauro Coducci Large, dark canvases decorate the ceiling and walls of the 18thcentury hall. It formerly embellished the oratory off the main hall where the Reliquary of the True Cross is still carefully preserved. Map 2 E5.

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Founded in the 9th century, rebuilt in and repeatedly modified, the church is a mix of architectural styles. The campanile, basilica ground plan and Byzantine columns survive from the 13th century. The sacristy ceiling was decorated by Veronese and there are some interesting altar paintings. Map 2 E4. In the 13th century it was one of the largest palazzi on the Grand Canal.

In it was bought by the state for the Dukes of Ferrara and its lavishly decorated rooms were used for banquets and state functions. In the Turks set up a warehouse fondaco , and the spacious portico was used for loading merchandise. Since the Fondaco has housed the natural history museum Museo di Storia Naturale.

There is a collection of stuffed animals, crustacea and dinosaur fossils and a section on lagoon life. Prize exhibits include a skeleton of an Ouranosaurus nigeriensis, 7 m 23 ft long and 3. Map 2 F4. It was built in by Domenico Rossi. Works by Piazzetta, Tiepolo and other 18th-century artists decorate the chancel. Near the second altar on the left is the bust of Antonio Foscarini, executed for treason in but pardoned the following year. Tel 72 17 There were various branches of the family, one of which resided in this handsome 17th-century mansion.

The illustrious Mocenigos are portrayed in a frieze around the portego on the first floor.


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The Museo del Tessuto e del Costume inside the house contains antique fabrics and exquisitely made costumes. Museo Orientale Tel 11 It took 58 years to complete this magnificent Baroque palace. Built for the Pesaro family, it was the masterpiece of Baldassare Longhena, who worked on it until his death in In the 19th century the Duchess of Bevilacqua La Masa bequeathed the palace to the city for exhibiting the works of unestablished Venetian artists.

The Museo Orientale has an idiosyncratic collection of Chinese and Japanese artifacts collected by the Count of Bardi during his 19th-century travels. In Tintoretto see p was Tintoretto commissioned to decorate the walls and ceilings of the Scuola. In this panorama of Calvary, Tintoretto reached a pitch of religious feeling never hitherto achieved in Venetian art. To the fury of his rivals, Tintoretto pre-empted his fellow competitors by installing his painting in situ prior to judging. He won the commission and was later made a member of the Scuola.

Over the next 23 years, Tintoretto decorated the entire building. The winning painting, St Roch in Glory 1, can be seen on the ceiling The subsidiary figures are full of life but do not lessen the central drama. Figure of Christ The crucified figure of the Redeemer is raised and leaning, accentuating His divinity and saving grace. The most moving work in the cycle is the Crucifixion 2. The biblical subjects on the walls and ceiling were painted in — The ceiling paintings viewed most comfortably with a hired mirror portray scenes from the Old Testament.

All three paintings are crowded compositions with much violent movement. The most striking paintings are The Temptation of Christ 7, which shows a handsome young Satan offering Christ two loaves of bread, and Adoration of the Shepherds 8. Like The Temptation of Christ, the Adoration is composed in two halves, with a female figure, shepherds and ox below, and the Holy Family and onlookers above. The beautiful carvings below the paintings were added in the 17th century by Francesco Pianta.

The allegorical figures include near the altar a caricature of Tintoretto with his palette and brushes, which is meant to represent Painting. The easel painting Christ Carrying the Cross is attributed to Giorgione, though many believe it to be a Titian. Apr—Oct: 9am—pm daily; Nov—Mar: 10am—5pm daily. The series starts with an Annunciation, and ends with an Assumption, which was restored some years ago. In all three paintings, the landscapes, rendered with rapid strokes, play a major role. The area takes its most popular and solidly comname from the 8th-century mercial area is the Riva degli stoup, Santa Schiavoni promenade.

Behind fortress that once stood on Water Maria Formosa what is now San Pietro, the the waterfront it is comparaisland which for centuries was the reli- tively quiet, characterized by narrow gious focus of the city. Glorious views of San Giorgio Maggiore compensate for the commercialized aspects of the quayside: souvenir stalls, excursion touts and an overabundance of tourists. Associations with literary figures 13th-century are legion.

Petrarch lived at No. Diocesano , and Ruskin stayed at the Hotel Danieli. Inland, the quiet, unassuming streets and squares of Castello provide a contrast to the bustling waterfront. Museo Diocesano. San Zaccaria. Map 8 D2. Tel 12 Founded in the 9th century, it was completely rebuilt between and The adjoining Benedictine convent, which had close links with the church, became quite notorious for the riotous behaviour of its nuns.

The majority were from families of Venetian nobility, many of them sent to the convent to avoid the expense of a dowry. Every Easter the doge came with his entourage to San Zaccaria — a custom which originated as an expression of gratitude to the nuns, who had relinquished part of their garden so that Piazza San Marco could be enlarged. The relics of eight doges lie buried in the waterlogged crypt.

Tel 95 Inside is the matroneo — the gallery where, in keeping with Greek Orthodox custom, the women sat apart from the men. Note also the iconostasis separating the sanctuary from the nave. The church has a cool, elegant interior, with an oval plan. The resplendent ceiling fresco, Triumph of Faith , was painted by Giambattista Tiepolo. It proved so popular that a warning plaque was set up still to be seen on the side wall , threatening damnation to parents who tried to pass off their children as orphans.

Today the church is a popular venue for concerts — with a strong emphasis on the music of Vivaldi. These are held throughout the year, usually on Mondays and Thursdays. See also Where to Stay p The palace became a hotel in and soon gained popularity with the literary and artistic set.

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In the s Room 10 witnessed an episode in the love affair between the French poet and dramatist Alfred de Musset, and novelist George Sand: when de Musset fell ill after a surfeit of orgies, Sand ran off with her Venetian doctor. Riva degli Schiavoni 5 Map 8 D2. For those who Tel 91 Originally built Romanesque building in the day with tourists thronging city. Nothing of the Piazza.

The Riva degli Schiavoni has of the prisoners as they made have been manifold. In its cloisters became the home their way over to the offices always been busy with boats. The gondolas churches. The collection are still here, but it is also includes paintings, statues, chock-a-block with water crucifixes and many taxis, vaporetti, excursion pieces of valuable silver. Naval ships and ocean liners The museum has two can also often be seen.

Intruding changing, but among the on a waterfront graced major permanent exhibits by fine Venetian palaces are works by Luca and mansions, its stark Giordano — , outline is still something which came from the of an eyesore. Map 7 C1. Tel 14 Palace 10am—8pm Tue—Sat, 10am—7pm Sun. The large Palazzo Querini Stampalia was commissioned in the 16th century by the descendants of the old Venetian Querini family.

Great art lovers, they filled the palace with fine paintings. In the last member of the dynasty bequeathed the palace and the family collection of art to the foundation that bears his name. The library on the first floor, which is open to the public, contains over , books. Church Tel 04 On the southern side is the church of Santa Maria Formosa, distinctive for its swelling apses. Built on ancient foundations, the church was designed by Mauro Coducci in but took over a century to assume its current form.

The campanile was added in Its most notable feature is the truly grotesque stone face that decorates its foot. St Barbara was the patron saint of soldiers: in wartime they prayed to her for protection, in victory they came for thanksgiving. Map 3 C5. Bartolomeo Colleoni, the famous condottiere or commander of mercenaries, left his fortune to the Republic on condition that his statue was placed in front of San Marco.

A prominent statue in the Piazza would have broken with precedent, so the Senate cunningly had Colleoni raised before the Scuola di San Marco instead of the basilica. The statue has a strong sense of power and movement which arguably ranks it alongside works of Donatello. Library Tel 43 Church Tel 56 It was built originally as one of the six great confraternities of the city see p Their first headquarters were destroyed by fire in , but the Scuola was rebuilt at the end of the 15th century.

The upper order was finished by Mauro Coducci in The interior was revamped in the 19th century and, since then, most of the artistic masterpieces have been dispersed. The library has a fine carved 16th-century ceiling, and the hospital chapel, the Church of San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti, contains an early Tintoretto and a work by Veronese. Ospedaletto e Calle Barbaria delle Tole, Castello.

Map 4 D5. Tel 29 The Ospedaletto was set up by the Republic in as a charitable institution to care for the sick and aged, and to educate orphans and abandoned girls. Such an education consisted largely of the study of music. The girls became leading figures in choirs and orchestras, with concerts bringing in funds for the construction in of a sala della musica, which became the main performance venue. This elegant room features frescoes by Jacopo Guarana. The church, which formed part of the Ospedaletto, was built by Andrea Palladio in San Lorenzo t Campo San Lorenzo.

Map 8 D1. Map 8 E1. Unfortunately there is Tel 61 The —72 by Palladio. The canal. It was built in the late 13th to early 14th centuries by the Dominican friars, and is striking for its huge Figure in left dimensions and architectransept tural austerity. Known as the Pantheon of Venice, it houses monuments to no less than 25 doges. Many of these are outstanding works, executed by the Lombardi family and other leading sculptors of the day. The sacristy has paintings that celebrate the Dominican Order. The doorway, which is decorated with Byzantine reliefs, is one of the earliest Renaissance architectural features in Venice.

The portico carvings are attributed to Bartolomeo Bon. The marble columns were taken from a former church on the island of Torcello. This west side wall is largely devoted to Mocenigo monuments. Cappella del Rosario. The Baroque high altar is attributed to Baldassare Longhena. The panel by Vivarini shows Christ Bearing the Cross Tel 59 The artist had a profound influence on the young Tiepolo. The Nave The vast interior is crossvaulted, held by wooden tiebeams and supported by ten huge columns of Istrian stone blocks. Calle Furlani, Castello A.

Tel 88 From the earliest days of the Republic, Venice forged trade links with the coastal region of Schiavonia Dalmatia across the Adriatic. By permanent Venetian rule was established there, and many of the Schiavoni came to live in Venice. By the midth century the Slav colony in the city had grown considerably and the State gave permission for them to found their own confraternity see p The Scuola was established in The exquisite frieze, executed between and , shows scenes from the lives of favourite saints: St George, St Tryphon and St Jerome.

Each episode of the narrative cycle is remarkable for its vivid colouring, minutely observed detail and historic record of Venetian life. Outstanding among them The foundations of this simple church date back to ancient times but the existing building is essentially Gothic —9. The intimate interior has major works of art which demonstrate the transition from Gothic to early Renaissance. This large-scale narrative scene, in a realistic landscape, set a precedent for later Renaissance painters. Campo Bandiera e Moro.

Map 8 E2. Map 8 F3. They began with a series of models of vessels that had been produced in the 17th century by the Arsenale, and to these added all the naval paraphernalia they could obtain. The collection has been housed in an ex-warehouse on the waterfront since , and now traces Venetian and Italian naval history to the present day.

The rest of the museum is divided into the Venetian navy, the Italian navy from to today, Adriatic vessels and the Swedish room. The museum is well laid out and has informative explanations in English. Limited public access. At its height in the 16th century, a workforce of 16,, the arsenalotti, was employed to construct, equip and repair the great Venetian galleys see pp44—5. One of the first production lines in Europe, it was like a city within a city, with its own workshops, warehouses, factories, foundries and docks.

From the early 16th century the hulls, which were built in the New Arsenal, were towed past a series of buildings in the Old Arsenal to be equipped in turn with rigging, ammunition and food supplies. By , when Venice was faced with the Turkish threat to take Cyprus, the Arsenale was so fast it was capable of turning out an entire galley in 24 hours.

Entrance to the Arsenale, guarded by 16th-century towers Surrounded by crenellated walls, the site today is largely abandoned. The huge gateway and vast site are the only evidence of its former splendour. The two lions guarding the entrance were pillaged from Piraeus near Athens by Admiral Francesco Morosini in A third lion, bald and sitting upright, bears runic inscriptions on his haunches, thought to have been carved by Scandinavian mercenaries who in fought for the Byzantine emperor against some Greek rebels.

By the 17th century, when the seeds of Venetian decline were well and truly sown, the number of arsenalotti plummeted to 1, Cannons and bronzes were melted down to contribute to victory monuments celebrating the French Revolution. Today the area is under military administration and for the most part closed to the public. The bridge by the arched gateway affords partial views of the shipyard, or try taking a scenic trip on a vaporetto either route 41 or 42 , which follows the perimeter of the Arsenal. Some parts of the Arsenale, such as the Corderie, the old rope factory, are now being used as performance spaces or exhibition centres, mostly for the Biennale see p A research consortium developing marine and coastal technologies also operates from the Arsenale.

The focal point of the tour is the solitary island of San Pietro di Castello, site of the former cathedral of Venice. The church, which was probably founded in the 7th century, became the cathedral of Venice and remained so until when San Marco took its place see p The first house on the right 2 was the home of John Cabot and his son Sebastian, the Italian navigators who in found what they thought to be the coast of China but in reality was the Labrador coast of Newfoundland.

Near the end of the street, through a gate on the right, a bronze monument of Garibaldi 3 by Augusto Benvenuti marks the northern end of the Viale Garibaldi, which leads to the public gardens. Cross the square Giardini Pubblici and the beyond the church and zigzag Biennale Pavilions left, right and left again for At the far side of the park, Paludo San Antonio, an unin- the bridge across the Rio dei spiring modern street that has Giardini brings you to the pubbeen reclaimed from marshland lic gardens and to the Biennale palude.

At the far end cross gate entrance y. If it happens the bridge over the Rio dei to be summer in an oddGiardini w and take the numbered year, the garstreet ahead. A right dens will be open turn along Viale 4 with the Biennale Novembre brings pavilions u at which 40 to 50 you down to the nations exhibit spacious gardens many examples of Parco delle of contemporary Rimembranze e. In front, the on Riva dei Partigiani is a large bronze statue.

Retrace the monument can only be your steps over the bridge seen at low tide. Known and turn left, following the as La Donna Partigiana, this waterfront back is a memorial to all the through the women who were killed park. Continue straight ahead and over the bridge for the Church of San Giuseppe q. The old cloisters are overgrown and strung with washing and fishing nets. The first turning right takes you across the Ponte di Quintavalle 9, a wooden bridge with good views of brightly coloured boats anchored on either side of the waterway.

Length: Just under 5 km 3 miles. Getting there: Vaporetto No. The green shady parks are a welcome retreat from the bustle of the city. The settlement dei Mendicoli was origithen spread eastwards, covering another six islands. Squero di San Trovaso, nally the home of fishermen the gondola boatyard and sailors. The Dorsoduro East of the Accademia, the Dorsoduro is a quiet and pretty neigh- plays host to several major collections bourhood with shaded squares, quiet of art, notably the Accademia Gallery canals and picturesque residences and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection belonging to wealthy Venetians and of 20th-century art.

The churches are foreigners. In the early s the area also rich repositories of paintings was favoured by British expatriates and sculpture: San Sebastiano has who used to attend the Anglican fine paintings by Paolo Veronese; the church of St George in Campo San Scuola Grande dei Carmini and the Vio. Occasionally visitors can see the sumptuous 18th-century ballrooom. Scuola Grande dei Carmini Tiepolo painted nine ceiling panels for the Scuola in — The delightful Rio San Barnaba is best appreciated from the Ponte dei Pugni, near the barge selling fruit and vegetables.

All roads seem to lead to Campo Santa Margherita, the heart of Dorsoduro. The square bustles with activity, particularly in the morning when the market stalls are functioning. Scuola Grande dei Carmini. O Palazzo Nani is one of the fine palaces that lie on the great curve called the Volta del Canal. San Barnaba A floating barge crammed with crates of fruit and vegetables lends a colourful note to the area 1. The Parish of San Barnaba, with its canalside square at the centre, was known in the 18th century as the home of impoverished Venetian patricians. They were attracted by the cheap rents, and while some relied on state support or begging, others worked in the State gambling house.

Today the square and canal, with its vegetable barge, are quietly appealing. The church Tel: 06 30, open am Mon—Sat is fairly unremarkable, apart from a Tiepolesque ceiling and a Holy Family attributed to Paolo Veronese. Ponte dei Pugni 2 Fondamenta Gherardini. Map 6 D3.

Spanning the peaceful Rio San Barnaba, the small bridge is distinguished by two pairs of footprints set in white stone on top of the bridge. These mark the starting positions for the fights which traditionally took place between rival factions. Formerly there were no balustrades and contenders hurled each other straight into the water.

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  • The battles became so bloodthirsty that they were banned in Map American heiress. Browning 6 E3. Tel 01 It is also one of the of the building. It has been few palaces in the city, beautifully restored and is which opens its doors embellished with to the public. Three frescoes, paintings and rooms between the period pieces taken from ballroom and Grand other local palaces or Canal side of the museums. In , long after second floor. By it was in canti On the became renowned. The sprawling square of Santa Margherita, lined with houses from the 14th and 15th centuries, is the lively hub of western Dorsoduro.

    The fish stalls sell live eels and lobster, the erborista alternative medicine, and the bakers some of the tastiest loaves in Venice. The former church of Santa Margherita, now an auditorium owned by the university, lies to the north of the square. Visitors can see sculptural fragments from the original 18th-century church, including gargoyles, on the truncated campanile and adjacent house.

    Founded mainly in the 13th century, they were lay confraternities existing for the charitable benefit of the neediest groups of society, the professions or resident ethnic minorities such as the Scuola dei Schiavoni, see p Some became extremely rich, spending large sums on buildings and paintings, often to the disadvantage of their declared beneficiaries. Map 5 C3.

    Known also as Santa Maria del Carmelo, this church was built in the 14th century but has since undergone extensive alterations. The most prominent The headquarters external feature is the of the Carmelite lofty campanile, whose confraternity was perilous tilt was built beside their skilfully rectified church in The In the s impressive Giambattista interior is large, Tiepolo was sombre and commissioned richly decorated.

    The work is John the Baptist c. This currently in Bologna, where it painting demonstrates the is being restored. On the right-hand re-established the order in side of this highly detailed, Europe after its expulsion almost Dutch-style landscape, from the Holy Land in the there is a tiny depiction of St 13th century.

    George killing the dragon. Campo Carmini. Map 5 C2. Tel 94 This is thanks to the artist Veronese who, from to and again in the s, was commissioned to decorate the sacristy ceiling, the nave ceiling, the frieze, the east end of the choir, the high altar, the doors of the organ panels and the chancel — in that order. The paintings, which are typical of Veronese, are rich and radiant, with sumptuous costumes and colours. Among the finest of his works are the three ceiling paintings that tell the story of Esther, Queen of Xerxes I of Persia, who brought about the deliverance of the Jewish people.

    Appropriately, the artist is buried in San Sebastiano, alongside the organ. Map 5 A3. Tel 03 Contrasting with the remote and rundown area that surrounds it, this church remains one of the most charming and delightful in Venice. Originally constructed in the 12th century, it has been rebuilt extensively over the centuries; the little porch on the north flank dates from the 15th century.

    Thanks to the Venice in Peril Fund, in the s the church underwent one of the most comprehensive restoration programmes since the floods of see p The floor, which was 30 cm 1 ft below the level of the canals, was rebuilt and raised slightly to prevent further damage, the roofs and lower walls were reconstructed, and paintings and statues restored. The interior is richly embellished, particularly the nave with its 16th-century gilded wood statues.

    On the upper walls is a series of paintings of the life of Christ by Alvise dal Friso and other pupils of Veronese. Angelo Raffaele 8 Campo Angelo Raffaele. Map 5 B3. Tel 85 Me, Mikko, and Annikki. Tiitu Takalo. David I. Last Witnesses. Svetlana Alexievich. The Impostor. Javier Cercas. Conversations with Casanova. Derek Parker. James Beidler. A Brotherhood of Spies. The Dead and Those About to Die. John C. The Global Age. Defying Hitler. Greg Lewis and Gordon Thomas. La Passione. Dianne Hales. A Woman of No Importance. Sonia Purnell. Notebooks: Victor Serge. France in the World. The Unwanted.

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