Villa Chiericati was designed for Giovanni Chiericati by the architect Andrea Palladio in the early 1550s. In 1996 UNESCO included the villa in the World Heritage Site City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto.
The villa is square and a portico projects from its principal facade. The principal rooms are built upon a piano nobile above a semi-basement. The upper floor is very much of secondary importance. The design of the villa was to be the prototype for Palladio's later works at the Villa Rotonda and the Villa Malcontenta.
Work on the villa stopped after the death of Palladio's client. It was not finally completed until after it had been purchased by Ludovico Porto in 1574. In 1584 he employed the architect Domenico Groppino, who had collaborated with Palladio on other projects, to complete the villa.There is some debate as to the extent Groppino influenced the eventual design of the building. While the portico is undoubtedly by the hand of Palladio himself, the position of the windows is at variance with the architect's own advice in I Quattro Libri dell'Architettura, where he warns against placing windows near the corner of a building lest it weaken the structure (the villa does in fact reveal signs of settlement here).References:
The Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg is situated in a strategic area on a rocky spur overlooking the Upper Rhine Plain, it was used by successive powers from the Middle Ages until the Thirty Years' War when it was abandoned. From 1900 to 1908 it was rebuilt at the behest of the German kaiser Wilhelm II. Today it is a major tourist site, attracting more than 500,000 visitors a year.
The first records of a castle built by the Hohenstaufens date back to 1147. The fortress changed its name to Koenigsburg (royal castle) around 1157. The castle was handed over to the Tiersteins by the Habsburgs following its destruction in 1462. They rebuilt and enlarged it, installing a defensive system designed to withstand artillery fire.
The fortification work accomplished over the 15th century did not suffice to keep the Swedish artillery at bay during the Thirty Years War, and the defences were overrun.