The Genius of Venice: Piazza San Marco and the Making of the Republic%E2%80%A8

Dial Parrott. Rizzoli Ex Libris, $40 (432p) ISBN 978-0847840533
Parrot's handsome, well-illustrated book celebrates the collective genius that gave rise to Venice's Piazza San Marco, one of the world's most enduring architectural masterpieces. Included are over a hundred photos and maps that illustrate the engineering feats required to build the Basilica and surrounding buildings in an inhospitable lagoon. The book details the building of the structures that line the square, including the Doge's Palace, the Marciana Library, the Campanile, and Basilica San Marco. Parrott explains how Piazza San Marco itself embodies the idea of modern urban space. The book effectively combines the rich images with a comprehensive explanation of the both political and economic histories that created the square, giving a fresh, integrated view of one of the most justifiably flocked-to tourist sites in Europe. En route, a history of the Venetian Republic itself emerges that places the city at the fore of an emerging modern Europe, built by proud and ingenious Venetians who transformed the city into a formidable Naval empire, as well as a hub of artistic and architectural innovation. 112 color illus, 4 maps. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 10/28/2013
Release date: 09/01/2013
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