San Polo: Venice Hotel Accommodation Guide
Places to see in San Polo
The Tourist Board of Venice recommends quite a few places to see in San Polo:
This is the oldest bridge and spans the Grand Canal. It probably dates back to 1172 and was originally in wood. In 1557 the Venetian Republic put out a tender for rebuilding the bridge in stone. The architects who competed for the tender included Palladio and Sanmichieli. The tender was awarded to Antonio da Ponte and in 1591 the bridge was inaugurated.
Palace of Camerlenghi
Located on the right of Rialto Bridge, the palace derives its name from the Camerlenghi, officials who were responsible for raising revenue for the Venetian Republic. The ground floor contained the cells of the tax evaders.
Church of S.Giacometto
Perhaps the oldest church in Venice. It is still laid out in the form of a Greek cross. Opposite is the 'Gobbo di Rialto' which was built by Pietro da Salò in 1541. Next tocan be found the 'Pietra del bando' from which the decrees of the Venetian Republic were read out. This was the commercial heart of Venice, where merchants met to hammer out their agreements and where the Banco Giro was located. This bank was already in existence in the twelfth century and enabled credit to circulate.
The Fabbriche Nuove
The Fabbriche Nuove were designed by Sansovino in 1555 and housed the governament departments that supervised trade.
Church of S.Cassiano
The church may have been built in the tenth century. It contains paintings by Jacopo Tintoretto and Andrea Schiavone.
Church of S.Aponal
Dates back to the eleventh century and was built by a family that came from Ravenna. Today it is deconsecrated and closed.
San Polo Square
It gives its name to the district. It was given its present appearance in 1750 when the Sant'Antonio canal was filled in. The palazzi that surround it offer a fine view. Races, bullfights and masked carnival balls were held here.
Church of San Polo (S.Paolo)
The present building is the result of different work done in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Paintings by Tintoretto, Palma il Giovane and Gian Domenico Tiepolo, with 14 canvases of the Stations of the Cross.
A fifteenth-century palazzo: it was probably here that the eighteenth century playwright Carlo Goldoni was born. Today it is a theatre -museum and contains documents on Goldoni's art and life.
Church of the Frari (Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari)
It was built in the fourteenth century by the Franciscans, who settled in Venice from about 1222. Rebuilt in the fifteenth century, it bears witness to the Venetian Republic with paintings by Titian and Bellini. It is an example of Gothic architecture from the middle of the fifteenth century, and has one of the highest belltowers in Venice, which was started in 1361.
Scuola Grande di San Rocco (Confraternity)
Located in the campo bearing the same name. It was founded in 1478 as a charitable institution. The present building was started in 1489 and finished in the sixteenth century by the architect Giangiacomo dei Grigi. It is famous for a series of paintings by Tintoretto that adorn the rooms. Next to the school there is the church, which is also dedicated to San Rocco. It was built in the sixteenth century and was renovated by Giovanni Scalfurotto in the eighteenth century.
Scuola Grande di S.Giovanni Evangelista (Confraternity)
This confraternity was founded in 1307. The headquarters was built in the fifteenth century and in 1481 the Bottega dei Lombardi built the impressive gateway in Renaissance style. In 1512 Mauro Codussi rebuilt the great internal staircase. The school was suppressed by the Napoleonic Edicts of 1806 and was finally acquired by private individuals in 1856; it is still a confraternity today.
And here are some more places to see:
Under the Venetian Republic, the largest stores of oil for heating and lighting were stored here ('ogio' is a dialect term for oil).
Sotoportego del Banco giro.
The first public bank started here.
Fondamente de la preson.
Minor offences like debt were punished here ('preson' is a dilect term for prison).
Calle dei Boteri.
This was where the master coopers made the oil barrels. The Doge greatly appreciated these coopers ('Boteri' is a dialect term for 'cooper').
Campo de le Becarie.
There were many different butchers' shops here. 'Becaria' derives from 'Becco' or 'billy goat', which was meat that was butchered and sold here ('becher' is a dialect term for 'butcher').
Rio Terà de le Carampane.
The 'carampane' were 'ladies of disrepute' who plied their trade in this area from the fifteenth century.
Ramo del Forner.
This refers to the legend of Fornaretto, a young baker's boy who was unjustly accused of murder. It probably served as a reminder to the Dogal authorities of the unjust execution of Fornaretto.
Calle dei Saoneri.
In sixteenth century Venice there were more than 25 soap factories. This industry was the envy of the whole world ('saoneri' is a dialect term for 'soapmakers').
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