Contarini dalla Porta di Ferro Palace


Venice: Palazzo Contarini dalla Porta di Ferro - 34 kB

General remarks:

Date:14./15th century
Address:Castello 3936
Current use:touristic flats
Overview map:locate


The name 'with the iron door' is derived from the iron door decorations which are today lost (see also John Ruskin in the literature section). The palace was much altered, especially the façade towards the Rio di San Francesco, where no gothic elements can be found any more. Towards the Salizzada Santa Giustina there are still remains of gothic arches and the well known but heavily restored gate tympan. An angel is holding the text 'Pax huic domui'. The stylistical relationship with the left gate of Palazzo Agnusdio o dei quattro Evangelisti, especially concerning the decorative frame elements, is evident.
The courtyard of palazzo Contarini dalla porta di ferro has one of the few examples of gothic stairways. Some columns of the balustrade were obviously removed later. On the platform balustrade, there is a Janus face sculpture which is often depicted in the technical literature. Some remains of the more or less original polychrome exterior frescoes are still visible on the right back façade.
In 1799, the San Francesco della Vigna branch of the Contarini family died out. The palace was lately restored and transformed to vacation homes.

Additional pictures:

Details - capitals within the exterior stairs
42 kB (164x109)

Palace courtyard with open limestone stairway
31 kB (164x107)

Related buildings


Arslan (1970) pp. 19, 28, 137, 158, 186, 195
Wolters (2000) pp. 156, 303-305


© 1999-2007 J.-Ch. Rößler
Venice architecture - palaces

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