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- Interactive map of Venice -

St. Mark's Basilica, Venice Italy - The mightiest of Venetian monuments, the one that really shows the greatness of Venice is undoubtedly the Basilica of San Marco. It was built over several centuries, frequently transformed and enriched with precious treasures, often from the Far East. Its architecture, a mixture of Byzantine, Roman and Venetian, is the work of artists and craftsmen coming from all over. It can be considered a real laboratory, a living organism, developing and transforming over the centuries. Doge's Palace, Venice Italy - If you imagine landing in Venice from the sea, as did those who came inland by ship, the first thing you see rising out of the water is the unmistakable shape of the Doge's Palace - the city's most famous building. Grand Council chamber or Sala del Maggior Consiglio (Doges Palace), Venice - It's in the famous Higher Council Hall (or Sala del Maggior Consiglio) where up to 2000 members of the aristocracy met that the Republic showed all its magnificence. This is an impressive hall, monumental in size.
Inner court's Doges Palace, Venice - The internal courtyard of the Doge's Palace is reached through the monumental Porta della Carta, on the Piazzetta di San Marco. Giant's Stairway (Doges Palace), Venice - The Palace entrance was through the monumental Porta della Carta. This palace was a highly functional building and each element had a precise purpose. Golden Staircase (Doges Palace), Venice - The Doge's apartment only occupies one of the Palace's three floors and to get to it you climb the beautiful Golden Staircase, begun halfway through the 16th century by Sansovino. The stairway owes its name to the spectacular golden stucco decorated vault and was formerly only used by Magistrates and important people.
Senate Hall (Sala del Senato) - Doge's Palace, Venice Italy - The Senate hall was used by government bodies to made foreign policy decisions such as appointing new ambassadors. Hall of the Council of Ten (Sala del Consiglio dei dieci) - Doge's palace, Venice - The last degree of justice was exercised by the most feared tribunal: The Council of the Ten. This Commission had exceptional powers and met in absolute secrecy in what is known as the Hall of the Council of the Ten. Chamber of Torment (Sala del Tormento) - Doge's Palace, Venice Italy - The torture chamber of Doge's Palace conneted directly to the famous Piombi.
Voting Hall (Sala dello Scrutinio) - Doge's palace, Venice Hall of the Inquisitors (Sala degli Inquisitori) - Doge's palace, Venice Hall of the Compass (Sala della Bussola) - Doge's palace, Venice - It wasnâÄ™t that difficult to end up in jail in Venice. At times, a single anonymous accusation was enough to be arrested, slipped into the "Mouth for secret accusations", still visible in the Hall of the Compass.
St. Mark's Square, Venice - The Basilica of San Marco overlooks one of the most beautiful squares in the world, a real marble salon, the city center for centuries. Next to both the Basilica and the Doge's Palace, all the most important religious and civil ceremonies have always been held there and now the Piazza San Marco is considered the city's main symbol and tourist attraction. Rialto Bridge, Venice - The Rialto Bridge is the most famous of the bridges that cross the Grand Canal (the other two are the Accademia Bridge and the Scalzi). In this area, which originally housed the food market, there has always been a canal crossing, at first, a simple bridge of boats, and later a real wooden bridge, made from two inclined ramps with a mobile section in the middle, in order to allow the passage of ships. St. Mark's Campanile, Venice Italy - In front of the Basilica we find that which the Venetians call the "Master of the house", moreover, the famous bell tower of San Marco. It is 97 metres high and on top is a golden statue of the Archangel Gabriel. The statue is 3 metres high and has big wings that, when pushed by the wind, make it rotate. For the Venetians, when the angel is facing the Basilica, it is a sign that there will be high water.
The Bridge of Sighs, Venice - The name is an invention of Romantic literature; legend says that from this bridge one could hear the sighs of the condemned as they were being led to prison. The Arsenal, Venice - Great sailing ability and efficient economic organisation of the trading companies were just two of the factors that made the Venetian navy great. To guarantee itself supremacy of the sea, Venice had to be able to count on a third factor, just as important: the ability to build its own ships. Basilica Santa Maria della Salute, Venice - Venice was attacked many times and with disastrous outcomes by a terrible enemy: the terrifying "Black Death". The Plague arrived for the first time in Venice in 1347, on a ship coming from Caffa. It was a catastrophe of frightening proportions: more than 3/5 of the population died in the 18 successive months.
Prisons (Doge's Palace), Venice - The prisons of Venice were found inside the Doge's Palace. The most inhospitable were situated on the ground floor, and came to be known as the Pozzi (or 'wells') - they were 18 cells âÄ“ dark and lined with wood, and connected by bleak, murky corridors. Here, the living conditions were terrible: under the wooden tables lurked every type of insect, food was scarce and inedible, the air suffocating, and the environment overcrowded. Prisons Courtyard (Doge's Palace), Venice - The Doge's Palace was also where justice was administered and where the city's terrible prisons were to be found. It wasn't that difficult to end up in jail in Venice. Giacomo Casanova's cell - Doge's palace, Venice - The Palace prisons were famous for being difficult to escape. However, someone did manage to demonstrate to the contrary. "As the day dawned on 26 July 1755, as the third bell rang, Messer Grande entered and told me he had to put me up in the Piombi".
Ca' Rezzonico museum: Venetian Palaces