|The St. Mark's Square (Piazza San Marco), which was called "the
drawing room of the world" by Musset, has been the centre of the
religious and social life in the Venetian republic for almost one
millennium. Here you will find the St. Mark's Basilica (Basilica
San Marco), the Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale) and the Bell tower
(Campanile), the most famous sights of Venice.
The architectural design of St. Mark's Square to a great extent
was determined by the St. Mark's Basilica, which adjoins the Doge's
Palace at the west side of the place.
The magnificent St. Mark's Basilica
is probably the most well known building in the heart of Venice.
The original church was built in 829-836 as a timber construction
and consecrated to the Evangelist Mark. In 976 however it became
a victim of flames. From 1043 to 1071, in the same place,
the present Basilica with the ground plan of a Greek cross
was erected. The Byzantine building with its 5 domes was consecrated
in 1094. However, it took many centuries for the marvellous decoration
of its facade and interior, with precious mural paintings and mosaics
on golden ground, to be completed.
The splendid facade likewise was destined to serve as an altar,
in order to give the people the opportunity to participate in religious
ceremonies from the St. Mark's Square in a dignified setting.
St. Mark's Square, Doge's
Campanile / Bell Tower
St. Mark's Basilica
|St. Mark's Basilica
|| Ascension dome