The Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute is a Roman Catholic church located at Punta della Dogana in the city of Venice.
It is a magnificent basilica sitting near the entrance to the Grand Canal, featuring stunning white stones, high domes, and stunning detailed art.
The History Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute
Back in October of 1630, Venice was suffering from the famous plague, with nearly 150,000 citizens already whipped out from it. Due to the immense hardship, the city was facing, the Venetian Senate made an offer to God, stating that if God stopped the plague, they would build a church to honour the Virgin Mary. In 1631, the plague was finally defeated, and the plans for the Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute began, under the supervision of Baldassarre Longhena.
The Design of the Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute
There was a countrywide competition for the church’s design, with an unknown architect named Baldassare Longhena the winner. Who proposed a combination of elements of the Venetian Byzantine architecture with domes similar to St. Peter’s in Rome. Due to immense detailed, the Basilica took half a century to complete, finishing in 1682.
The interior of the basilica is just as stunning as the outer section, with the indoors flooded with light from the pale-tinted glass covering the high dome. The design draws the eye to the elaborately carved baroque high altar. In featuring a sculpture of the Virgin Mary with Child, created by the famous Flemish artist Le Court. On one side of the altar, Venice is represented as a noblewoman, kneeling, while on the other side, the Plague is represented by an old women mid-flight, being chased by an angel.
The Festa della Salute
If you are visiting Venice in November time, we suggest staying until the 21st, with this being the Festa Della Salute. A celebration, where the huge main doors of the basilica are opened, and Venetians walk across the canal, paying their respects to the Virgin Mary. It is a long-honoured tradition, with the Venice gondoliers even bringing their oars to be blessed by a priest.