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Brownsville Community Library

World Cultures & Travel

Venice & the Venetian Empire
World Cultures & Travel
Photo by Don Lyon

The World Cultures & Travel group had their final meeting of the season Thursday night, traveling by armchair to "Venice and the Venetian Empire" with Donald Lyon's images and knowledge gleaned from leading photo tours to Venice, the Italian Alps, Greece, Croatia, Turkey and Syria--all regions that had played a part in creating Venice's trading empire. We learned of the role that Venice played in the sack of Constantinople during the 4th Crusade and that many of the treasures proudly displayed in Venice, such as the four bronze horses at St. Mark’s Basilica, were stolen at that time.  Even the body of St. Mark was stolen from Alexandria, Egypt, to serve as Venice's patron saint.  It seemed that the eight Crusades mounted by Western Kings and Popes from the 11th through 13th Centuries served more to enrich the Crusaders than to restore the Holy Land to Christianity. Don shared images of the waterways, gondolas and palaces of Venice and talked of the exploits of 18th C. Casanova as symbolic of Venice's decline.  Don promised to be back in the autumn with more World Cultures and Travel--Stay Tuned to Brownsville Library Happenings.