Venice Gondola Decoration
This decoration depicts a Venetian gondola. This gondola has a black hull, red seating and is embellished with gold decoration.
The typical comb or prow iron (in Venetian fero da prora or dolfin) at the back of a gondola helps to balance the weight of the gondolier. Its S form recalls the Grand Canal, while the six teeth facing forward represent the six districts of Venice. The tooth facing backward stands for the Giudecca Isle. The small arch over the highest tooth is the Rialto Bridge. The arched part at the top has a peculiar name, the Doge’s hat.
Initially only persons of high rank used their gondola to get around the city. Each noble family had its own private boat, and of course a gondolier. Now they are a very popular, and traditional means of transportation on Venice's waterways.
- 6.5cm (h) x 12cm (w) x 0.5cm (d)
- Felt, cotton thread, kapok, beads
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Our newest major exhibition, Canaletto’s Venice Revisited, is now open at the National Maritime Museum. Explore the complete set of 24 Venetian views painted by Canaletto in the 1730s from the Woburn Abbey Collection, alongside displays that investigate how the tourism that helped establish Canaletto’s career is now threatening the city’s future. The exhibition runs until 25 September 2022.
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