Architectural Debate in Venice

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To a visitor to Venice and the Veneto it may seem that the eighteenth-century architects of the state (which included, along with the city of Venice, the important cultural centers of Padua, Verona, Vicenza, and Treviso) faithfully followed the great traditions set by architects of the past. But this is only partially true: scholars now think that Venice at the time should be credited precisely for its groundbreaking architectural thought, and for advocating a radical innovation of architectural language before the actual advent of modernism. The outcome of these fiery debates is barely perceptible in the real buildings because practicing architects usually had to accommodate themselves to public taste, which was often conservative. As the architect Giorgio Massari is said to have complained, “I know for sure that for every innovative project of mine, however based on reason, another one, imitating Palladio or Vignola, will be preferred. And who will support my family when I have no work?”
Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationCompanion to the History of Architecture
Subtitle of host publicationEighteenth-Century Architecture
EditorsCaroline van Eck, Sigrid de Jong
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons, Ltd
Number of pages24
ISBN (Print)9781118887226
StatePublished - 2017


  • Andrea Musàlo
  • architectural theory
  • architectural treatises
  • Carlo Lodoli
  • Descartes
  • Giovanni Poleni
  • proportion
  • Tommaso Temanza
  • Venice
  • Vitruvius


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