Hidden treasures

The 'Naval Battle' by Tintoretto at Doge’s Palace

Historical Curiosities
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The 'Naval Battle' by Tintoretto at Doge’s Palace

The ceiling of the Doge's Palace, in addition to being the largest wooden suspended ceiling in the world, is a real trove of painting masterpieces that celebrate the magnificence of the Serenissima Republic.

Among the 35 paintings decorating it, there is one by Jacopo Tintoretto that recalls an event that is nothing short of incredible: between December 1438 and April 1439, during a war with the nearby Duchy of Milan, the military engineers of the Venice Republic transported ships, galleys and frigates from the Adriatic Sea to Lake Garda, navigating upstream on the River Adige to Rovereto and transporting the ships by land to Torbole, on the northern shores of the lake, covering a journey of about 20 km through the mountains.

For the complex operation, which lasted three months and cost the Venice Republic the staggering sum of 15,000 ducats, hundreds of workers were deployed. It was one of the most important military engineering operations ever undertaken until then and, as such, had great resonance throughout Europe.

The transport of the fleet, however, became known to the people in Milan so the surprise factor, which Piero Zen, captain of the Venetian fleet, was counting on, did not take effect... The battle took place off the coast of Desenzano with Milan emerging victorious, thanks to its larger fleet, and part of the Venetian ships seized.

The painting by Tintoretto depicts the fierce battle with the Milan armada.

A visit to the Doge’s Palace is definitely something to do if you find yourself in Venice ... On our portal you can buy a ticket to Palazzo Ducale or a convenient guided tour with skip-the-line access!

If you are looking for other Tintoretto's artworks, please visit our special section Tintoretto 500 to find out more information and fascinating ideas that will let you discover his masterpieces in Venice.

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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