Piazza San Marco
on the Grand Canal
Contributed by Project for Public Spaces
The center of Venetian government and public life for nearly a millenium, and according to Napoleon, "the most elegant drawing room of Europe."
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History & Background
As the site of countless pageants, processions, political activities, Carnival festivities and more, the piazza has been a focal point throughout Venice's history. Today, its beauty and grace make it the premier attraction in a city loaded with sights.
Since 1400, the piazza has been bordered on three sides by the famous triumvirate of Saint Marks Basilica, the Doges' Palace and the Church of San Geminiano. Napoleon unified the architecture of the square by later adding Fabrica Nuova opposite the basilica.