Posts Tagged ‘venice’

My Trip Abroad 1909: John Radford Abbot’s Diary: August 20 – 21

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015

View of interior of Doge’s Palace (Palace of Doges in transcription), c. 1900

Friday, August 20th

Venice, Milan,

After breakfast at the hotel we started right out for the Palace of the Doges(?), and went all through it. Wonderful place and full of fine pictures by the great Italian masters. Saw all the old council halls of the state, etc. We then visited the dungeons and prisons. Awful little cells cut in the solid rock. Saw the torture chamber and the bridge of Sighs(?). Could not cross the latter. After the Palace we went to the Art Gallery and saw some of the best works by the great masters, Tintaretto(?) Titian(?) and others. The best was the “Assumption” by Titian(?). Went back to the post office to leave our address and then hustled for lunch at the Cavaletto. Very good. After lunch we went back to the hotel, got our bags and things, and took the canal boat for the station. It was awful slow, and we just got the train after agreed(?) sprint. Left Venice at two. Very pretty and comfortable ride to Milan, although our companions weren’t of the best. Got to Milan at 7:15, had a fine supper in the station, and caught the 8 o’clock train for Stresa, arriving at 10:45. Hotel P Itali(?) & Pension Suiss(?)

Exterior view of Doge's Palace

Exterior view of Doge’s Palace

Saturday, August 21st


Late breakfast. Afterwards we took a walk along the edge of the lake on the road. Went through the ground of some Italian nobleman’s villa. Beautiful trees and flowers. Further along the road we found some black berry bushes and we spent some time there. We got back to the hotel in time for lunch of steak and potatoes. Thayer and Dale had to change rooms. Then we hired a row boat aand rowed over to Isola Bella. We were taken through the palace and through the gardens. We saw all kinds of trees there banana, orange, lemon, cork, bread-fruit, bamboo, etc. Then we rowed ^round Isola Madre and stopped in the middle of the lake and had a swim. It was corking. Then we rowed back to Stresa and got supper. Beef steak, potatoes, etc. In the evening the others [word crossed out and unreadable] took a walk and I stayed and wrote letters. It had begun to rain at suppertime and kept up all night.

When Doge Angelo Partecipazio moved the seat of government from Malamocco to modern-day Rialto in 810, work began on a ducal palace. However, this palace was destroyed in a 10th century fire; reconstruction began under Doge Sebastiano Ziani in the 12th century. Traces of this work can still be seen on the ground floor of the current palace. In 1424, Doge Francesco Foscari began work to extend the palace reconstruction to rooms that would serve as law-courts, as well as many rooms on the first floor, including an internal courtyard. A fire broke out in 1483, completely destroying the Doge’s Apartments, so reconstruction began immediately, but included raising an entirely new structure as well. Another fire broke out in 1547, but luckily caused minor damage to the structure as a whole; refurbishment was in process when a third fire destroyed two very important rooms, the Scrutinio Room and the Great Council Chamber, along with many paintings by famous artists. The palace served both as a residence for the Doge, and for all political institutions for the Republic of Venice until 1797. Since then Venice was occupied by the French and Austrians until 1866 when it finally became part of Italy. When the Italian government began to notice clear signs of decay at the end of the 19th century, all public offices were moved elsewhere, except the State Office for the Protection of Historical Monuments. In 1996, Doge’s Palace was added to the Venetian museum network.



My Trip Abroad 1909: John Radford Abbot’s Diary: August 18 – 19

Tuesday, December 15th, 2015
View of St. Mark's Basilica (St. Mark's Cathedral in transcription) from piazza

View of St. Mark’s Basilica (St. Mark’s Cathedral in transcription) from Piazza San Marco

Wednesday, August 18th

Milan, Venice

Left Milan at 7:45 for Venice Good train with no 3rd class but we didnt get seats. Very fast trip but extremely hot and dusty. Through typical Italian scenery. Got to Venice at 12:30 and took a canal boat up the grand canal to Zaccaria(?), the station right opposite our hotel, the Aurora. The Aurora is not much good. Got lunch at a restaurant on the Merceria. Only fair. After lunch we walked about awhile and then went into St. Mark’s cathedral. Very different from the others. Byzantine style. Very highly decorated. After about an hour in the cathedral we took the steamer for the Lido, an island about 2 miles away. Went to the fine baths there and enjoyed a swim in the Adriatic Sea. The water was very warm and nice. It was late when we got through so we took supper at the Lido restaurant. Very good. It had been very hot all day, but a little breeze came up in the evening, and we had a nice cool ride home in the steamer. Walked down the Merceria, and looked in all the fascinating shops. Venice certainly is an interesting and fascinating city. Went to bed fairly early. I did not sleep well. A little attack of constipation.

Interior view of St. Mark's Basilica

Interior view of St. Mark’s Basilica

Thursday, August 19th


Got up late. A small breakfast at the hotel. We started out to hunt up a doctor. Took a gondola and went to Rialto ^Went through a glass-ware store. Found the doctor we were after was away, So we came back of the Grand Canal and visited Cook’s. They told us of another English doctor, and after a short ride on the Canal and a long hunt we found him He was very nice and pleasant. He fixed me up all right, but we didn’t leave till 1:30. I took a lay off in the P.M. while the others visited St. Mark’s again and got my medicine for me. I took a short walk out into the gardens. The others came back about 5 and we went to the Lido again and had another good swim in the Adriatic Sea. Got back to St. Mark’s at 7:15 and took a gondola ride to the Rialto Bridge. Fine time to ride. We then visited the post office and had dinner at the Vapore Restaurant. Not much good. After dinner we took a short walk, bought some postals, and went to bed. Very comfortable night.