St. Mark’s Basilica – 3/26/17

This morning is a quiet time for Ma and Pa. Sarah has scooted off to the Rialto Bridge to find some gifts for her friends but John and I are content to stay at the apartment fighting with the internet and sipping tea.

In the afternoon St. Mark’s Basilica is open and lighted for viewing and we make our way over to stand in line with lots of other tourists. I remember in the past we’ve gone in and enjoyed a leisurely look around. Not so this time. We are herded like art-struck cattle through the basilica. The guidebook says that the average length of a visit is 10 minutes which is enough time to see basically nothing. We are also not allowed to take pictures which is sad because the mosaics are lovely and certainly are not harmed by non-flash photography. I manage a few shots before I am caught and yelled at.

St. Mark’s is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Venice. It is the most famous of the city’s churches and one of the best known examples of Italo-Byzantine architecture. It lies at the eastern end of the Piazza San Marco, adjacent and connected to the Doge’s Palace. Originally it was the chapel of the Doge, and has only been the city’s cathedral since 1807. Wikipedia

Basilica San Marco

The interior of St. Mark’s is resplendent with mosaics. There are many scenes and people from both the Old and New Testament set against a golden background. Even though some lights are on, it is still difficult to make out many of them.  Plus we are not given much time to look at anything before we are carried on by the surge of the crowd.

Some pictures from the interior –

Overview of interior of St. Mark’s
Tiled floor
Golden Altar
Detail of Golden Altar, King Solomon
Mosaic of Christ enthroned

When we depart the church the sky is looking threatening. Sarah decides to walk back and John and will take the vaporetto. After making this decision it starts to rain and we and hundreds of other people also decide to take the vaporetto. It is very crowded and we have to wait a while to get onto one since they are too full. Luckily we have made it to an enclosed portion of the stop. Once we get to our station Sarah is waiting for us with an umbrella. What a sweet daughter!

View towards St. Mark’s Square from the vaporetto

Tonight’s dinner is at the Osteria San Barnaba. We have salads and pasta and finish up with biscotti and zibibbo, a dessert wine.

Tomorrow we will complete visiting the Chorus Churches and I will finish up our tale of Venice from a new hotel with better wifi, I hope.

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