Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Chiesa Della Salute

In 1630, the plague had killed about a third of the population in Venice. That October, the Doge proclaimed that if God would stop the plague, he would build a wonderful church in return. Ironically, the plague did stop the next year, but not before it claimed the life of the Dodge. However, architect Baldassare Longhena was still commissioned to build the promised church in gratitude for the relief of the plague's destruction. It was built on the opposite side of the grand canal from St. Mark's and was dubbed Santa Maria della Salute. I was really impressed with the history of this wonderful church, and was also taken by surprise by its really great interior space. The interior is octagonal with a very large dome, and when the light shines through the windows, the interior seems to glow. The mostly white interior looks really pure and seems quite holy and serene. The history and beauty of this particular church made it one of my favorites that we have visited so far.
Janis Fowler

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