Saint Mark’s Basilica

Saint Mark’s Basilica (Basilica di San Marco) is the major cathedral of Venice. It is considered an important example of Byzantine architecture in Italy.

It was constructed in 1100 based on the church of the Holy Apostles in Constantinople. They started to construct it in 830 to house the relics of Mark the Evangelist that were transferred from Alexandria in 829.

In the beginning it was constructed in the Basilica style. Later on there were some Byzantine (11th century) and gothic changes (13th century). It has the shape of a cross with four domes, enclosing a central, larger one.

At the portico of the church there are four copper and gold horses that Constantine the Great took from the Arch of Trajan (Rome) and transported to Constantinople. After the fall of Constantinople to the Franks (1204) they were transported to Venice and placed in Saint Mark.