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Historical architecture

The History of Rome spans 2,800 years of the existence of a city that grew from a small Italian village in the 9th century BC into the center of a vast civilization that dominated the Mediterranean region for centuries, but was eventually overrun by Germanic tribes, marking the beginning of the Middle Ages, and that eventually became the seat of the Roman Catholic Church and the home of a sovereign state within its walls, Vatican City.
The town is noted for its splendid churches, palaces, and other buildings, many of which were designed by the architect Andrea Palladio. Parts of a 13th-century wall that encircled the town are still standing.
Palladio's first work of major importance was the renovation (begun 1549) of the facade and exterior supporting structure of the so-called Basilica, or town hall, of Vicenza. In and near Vicenza he designed many residences and public buildings.
Turin offers a circuit of great historical and architectural interest: the Savoy Residences. In addition to the Royal Palace, the official residence of the Savoys until 1865, the circuit includes palaces, residences and castles in the city centre and in the surrounding towns. One of its main symbols is the Mole Antonelliana, which hosts the National Cinema Museum of Italy. The Cathedral of St John the Baptist houses the Shroud of Turin, an old linen cloth with an imprint of a man, which is believed by many to be the cloth that covered Jesus in his grave.
Siena's cathedral, the Duomo, begun in the 12th century, is one of the great examples of Italian romanesque architecture. Its main facade was completed in 1380. Its campanile and baptistry make a fine group. It is unique among Christian cathedrals in that its axis runs north-south.
The surge in artistic, literary, and scientific investigation that occurred in Florence in the 14th-16th centuries was precipitated by Florentines' preoccupation with money, banking and trade and with the display of wealth and leisure.
Venice, one of the most remarkable and extraordinary cities in Europe, has been a first-class cultural centre from time immemorial. The ‘Queen of the Adriatic’ has given birth to such eminent personalities such as Marco Polo and Giacomo Casanova, who are famous throughout the world.

Contemporary architecture


Special Features

002-Firenze.Duomo01.jpg (87571 bytes) Top Ten Italian Architecture
Italy is one of the most popular destinations on the tourist trail, known for its exsquisite fashion, historical buildings and it's fabulous food.
What does Italy hold for the visitor that will make it a memorable once in a lifetime destination, try our ten top places.
012b.jpg (75699 bytes) Top Ten Rome Architecture
The glories of Ancient Rome are easily accessible to the visitor and some can be seen for free while others are part of Rome Passes and Cards. Most ancient sites are in Rome's historic center so you can visit several places in one day. Even if you don't have time to take an in-depth look, just walking by some of these places is incredible and gives you an overview of ancient Rome's history. During the 1990's many of these sites were renovated and updated, making them more user- friendly.
Italian Renaissance Architecture
Renaissance Architecture is the architecture of the period beginning between the early 15th and the early 17th centuries in different regions of Europe, where there was a conscious revival and development of certain elements of Classical Greek and Roman thought and material culture.

This month's featured building

  Villa Capra, or Villa Rotunda Andrea Palladio 1566 to 1571, near Vicenza, Italy
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Villa Capra "La Rotonda" is a Renaissance villa in Vicenza, northern Italy, designed by Andrea Palladio. Correctly but seldom known as Villa Almerico-Capra, it is also known as Villa Rotonda, Villa Rotunda, Villa La Rotonda, or Villa Almerico. The name 'Capra' derives from the Capra brothers who completed the building after it was ceded to them in 1591.

Like other Palladio's work in Vicenza, it is included in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list.

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