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View Clock Tower from top San Marco during high water and rain

Clock Tower



Clock Tower

"The curious thing about Coducci, the architect of this and most of the other  important early Renaissance buildings in  Venice, is that his name was unknown until some industrious archive research was carried out at the end of the  nineteenth century. The central tower  was built between 1496 and 1506; the wings were an addition, perhaps by Pietro Lombardo. Above the clock face is the Madonna. During Ascension Week and at the Epiphany, the Magi come out and bow to her every hour, in an angel-led  procession. At other times of year, the burly Moors on the roof, made of gun-metal and cast in 1497, strike the hour. Another Moore, Roger - who has  been cast plenty of times since 1497 - sent a villain flying through the clock face in the film Moonraker. If the long work of restoration really does come to an end in 2000 (no breath-holding, please), it will be possible once again to climb the tower
and get a close view of the clock-mechanism and those muscular Moors."

"The clock shows the hours in Roman numerals, the phases of the moon and the Zodiac. It also gives indications to sailors about the tides and which months are more favorable for sailing. The Serenissima gave a large  reward to the Ranieri brothers who constructed the clock tower, but legend has it that later their eyes were removed in order to keep them from repeating such a wonder."
(History and Curiosity of Venice)



By:  Natasha Wallace
Copyright 1998-2004 all rights reserved
Created 10/19/2000
Updated 3/29/2004