John Ruskin: The Stones of Venice

(3140 words)
  • Carmen Casaliggi (Cardiff Metropolitan University)

Mainly a treatise on architecture, John Ruskin’s The Stones of Venice (1851-3) was meant to apply to the buildings of Venice the general principles enunciated in The Seven Lamps of Architecture (1848). It moves, however, beyond the earlier work’s abstract treatment, not only because it dedicates substantial attention to the details of architectural construction, but also because it places architecture within its social, political, moral, and religious context. Volume I, “The Foundations”, discusses the edifices of Venice and their functional and ornamental aspects and presents a brief history of the city; in Volume II, “The Sea Stories”, Ruskin turned his thoughts to the Byzantine period and the climactic …

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Casaliggi, Carmen. "The Stones of Venice". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 29 February 2012
[, accessed 28 September 2016.]