Santa Maria della Salute

Venice, Italy

Santa Maria della Salute (Saint Mary of Health), commonly known simply as the Salute, stands on the narrow finger of Punta della Dogana, between the Grand Canal and the Giudecca Canal, making the church visible when entering the Piazza San Marco from the water. The Salute is part of the parish of the Gesuati and is the most recent of the so-called plague churches.

In 1630, Venice experienced an unusually devastating outbreak of the plague. As a votive offering for the city's deliverance from the pestilence, the Republic of Venice vowed to build and dedicate a church to Our Lady of Health. The church was designed in the then fashionable baroque style by Baldassare Longhena, who studied under the architect Vincenzo Scamozzi. Construction began in 1631. Most of the objects of art housed in the church bear references to the Black Death.

The dome of the Salute was an important addition to the Venice skyline and soon became emblematic of the city, inspiring artists like Canaletto, J. M. W. Turner, John Singer Sargent, and the Venetian artist Francesco Guardi.

The Salute is a vast, octagonal building with two domes and a pair of picturesque bell-towers at the back. Built on a platform made of 1,000,000 wooden piles, it is constructed of Istrian stone and marmorino (brick covered with marble dust). At the apex of the pediment stands a statue of the Virgin Mary who presides over the church which was erected in her honour. The façade is decorated with figures of Saint George, Saint Theodore, the Evangelists, the Prophets, Judith with the head of Holofernes.

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Details

Founded: 1631
Category: Religious sites in Italy

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

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4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Milan Paunovic (9 months ago)
One awesome place called Venice and it’s fantastic beauty one bucket list for world travellers had the pleasure of visiting this fantastic floating buildings
Cutter (13 months ago)
It's a nice old church though nothing grand compared to many others throughout Italy. It is subtle however and better suited for quiet reflection I think. As of this writing it's currently undergoing renovations and the sacristy containing Titan's work is sadly closed for the time being. There is a nominal charge of 4 Euro to see it when open.
Chinmaya B Mulgundmath (2 years ago)
Beautiful!!
Andy Price (2 years ago)
Great views and at present very peaceful
Hugh TOLER (2 years ago)
Great art.
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