Basilica Palladiana

Entertainment & Arts

Europe, Italy, Vicenza

The Basilica Palladiana is a Renaissance building in the central Piazza dei Signori in Vicenza, north-eastern Italy. The most notable feature of the edifice is the loggia, which shows one of the first examples of the what came to be known as the Palladian window, designed by a young Andrea Palladio, whose work in architecture was to have a significant effect on the field during the Renaissance and later periods. The building was originally constructed in the 15th century and was known as the Palazzo della Ragione. The building was the seat of government and also housed a number of shops on the ground floor. When part of the building collapsed in the sixteenth century, the Council of One Hundred commissioned many architects to submit designs and selected Palladio to reconstruct the building in April 1549. Palladio added a new outer-shell of marble classical forms, a loggia and a portico that now obscure the original Gothic architecture. The Basilica was an expensive project and took a long time to complete. Palladio received an income for the work during most of his life. Only in 1614 - thirty years after his death - did the building stand complete.