More flippin’ mysteries

This city just kills me. I intended to walk into Castello, to see if a notice had been posted at the San Biagio church about the special mass on 3 February. This saint is the protector of the throat, and it seemed a wise thing to attend, given the cold, damp weather, to get any help available.

I didn’t get any further than the Piazzetta when I was stopped in my tracks by the play of light and shade on the Palazzo Ducale.

Odio! Since I’m here, I may as well do some looking.

On Saturday, when I had a grand promenade of discovery with Fausto (Allogia Barbaria blog), and the Lord of the Wells, the latter had pointed out some markings between the arches of the columns shown below.

We conjectured that these could have been the marks of the artisans who sculpted the original capitals. Here are some of those incised marks.

Now, if only I had walked away, I would have achieved my original aim. But then my deviant eyes spotted more marks, this time on the inside of the arches. Who made these? Why were they made? We may never know.


Oh, stones, please talk to us. Release your wonderful secrets.


Filed under Venice

21 responses to “More flippin’ mysteries

  1. Interesting things you have going on here on this site! I love the wonderful little details discovered in town and documented here. Since I moved to Venice just months ago your blog is a great source of inspiration – and a reminder to keep eyes open even more. Arved


  2. Shelagh Jackson

    I just love all your daily observations of street life old and new, in Venice, Yvonne.
    I wish you had done this trip beofre I was there in 2010; you are such a good walking guidebook!!
    Enjoy the rest of your visit there.


  3. MaryK

    There are lots and lots of us who don’t want you to leave Venice either, particularly after you share such special discoveries with us……..

    I don’t know how many times I’ve looked at and photographed those columns and never noticed those markings. (so am feeling a bit silly really!)


    • Don’t ever feel silly about this place. You need to look up, down, right and left, almost everywhere. How can you do that, especially when hoards of tourists are pushing you along?


  4. Michelle

    hmmm, are we really sure, Randy?
    When I was growing up we always had to go to Mass on Feb 3…it was called St. Blaze Day to have our throats blessed so we didn’t get bad colds. That was a little tidbit I had forgotten. Thanks for the reminder my friend.


  5. I didn’t do it! Honest!


  6. Bert

    Somewhere there’s bound to be an expert who could answer these questions; all we have to do is find one and get him or her to read your blog! I think one or two could be just somebody’s initials, like carving your initials on your desk at school, to say “I was here”, but, as you say, some must mean more than that. Could the fifth one have been a sundial of some sort? There could have been a metal gnomon in the centre.


  7. How is it that old in places like Venice is so beautiful and in other places old is just… well… old?


  8. Pat

    It’s old grafitti!!! In Egypt I saw some from Romans on the Temple at Abu Simbal!! Their “mark” “I was here”


    • It could be that the ones in the blocks between the columns were put there before they were put in place, because they are quite high. But, next time you’re in Venice, have a look, it’s not random. it’s difficult to explain, they seem to be placed quite specifically.


  9. I go out in the morning, thinking “Right, I have to get to ‘a’ to get some vegetables”. Hours later, I might be at ‘d’, nowhere near the original target, and suffering from vitamin deficiency, to boot!

    Please, don’t mention that 4 letter word. (Home)


  10. Barb

    Oh, Yvonne, just when I thought I had mastered a few of the stories
    behind some of the columns, you’ve added yet a new discovery and mystery. You continue to amaze me with your keen eye. Whatever will we do when you return home and we do not have our daily “Venice fix”?


  11. Joanne Hoefer

    Stop your killing me – stuck here as I am


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