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The Horses of Saint Mark

The Horses of San Marco, Venice, San Marco Museum | Photo: Nino Barbieri (Opera propria) via Wikimedia Creative Commons


The four bronze horses of the Saint Mark Cathedral are one of the most celebrated works of the city of Venice. Originally placed in the Hippodrome at Constantinople, they were taken by the Venetians as spoils of war during the Fourth Crusade (1204) and placed on the Basilica as a symbol of victory and continuity with the imperial power of Byzantium. They represent the only complete group of four horses preserved from classical statuary.



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