The Architectural History of Venice

The Architectural History of Venice

The Architectural History of Venice

The Architectural History of Venice


This book is the indispensable guide to the history of architecture in Venice, encompassing the city's fascinating variety of buildings from ancient times to the present day. Completely updated and filled with attractive new illustrations, this edition invites all visitors to Venice, armchair travellers, and students of Renaissance art and architecture to a fuller appreciation of the buildings of this uniquely beautiful city.


Most writers on Venetian art fall into one of two categories -- those who appear seldom to have been to Venice, and those who seem never to have been anywhere else. I have tried to avoid both these pitfalls, but I admit that I would never have undertaken to write this book but for my own great affection for the city. Indeed, I like to think of Venice as my second home. The scope of this book has been restricted to Venice itself, rather than the whole of the Veneto, in order to keep the book to a manageable length.

I am grateful to Michael Stephenson who first had the idea for this book, and to his successor as Editor, Paula Shea, whose excellent combination of toughness and understanding has sustained me through the various stages of preparation.

I should like to thank the directors and staff of the following archives and libraries for their assistance and co-operation during the preparation of the manuscript: Biblioteca Marciana, Venice; Biblioteca Correr, Venice; Biblioteca della Fondazione Cini, Venice; Archivio di Stato, Venice; University Library, Cambridge; library of the Department of Architecture and History of Art, Cambridge; Marquand Library, Princeton; library of the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton; and the libraries of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, London.

Among the friends and colleagues who have generously shared their ideas and helped me to sort out individual problems I should mention in particular Adolfo Bernardello, Miklos and Serena Boskovits, Bruce Boucher, Susan Connell, Jane Glover, Professor Michelangelo Muraro, David and Ellen Ikosand, and Juergen and Anne Schulz. I owe a continuing debt to Howard Burns, who first introduced me to Italian architecture as an undergraduate, and who has provided inspiration and guidance ever since. Warm thanks are due to Francesco and Maria Grazia Bertola for their generous hospitality in Venice.

I should like to express my deep gratitude to A.F. Kersting and Sarah Quill, who have taken most of the photographs for this book, and who have both gone to great lengths to satisfy the most awkward requirements. Bertl Gaye took the photograph of me on the backflap of the jacket. I am grateful to Linda Auerbach, Paula Bozzay, Louise Cooper, Molly Jones and Denise Newman, who have helped with typing the manuscript at various times.

My two children, Mark and Sarah, have been far more tolerant and cooperative than one could possibly expect of them at such a young age (the book was started on Mark's first birthday and completed shortly before . . .

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