Anecdotes Of Palladia (1518-1580)
( Originally Published 1915 )
Palladio was the son of a carpenter in the employ of Frissino, a scholar and poet. Frissino adopted the carpenter's son, gave him the name of Palladio (from Pallas, Goddess of Wisdom), and educated him as an architect.
Palladio became one of the celebrated architects of the Renaissance. He designed palaces and many other buildings in his native home of Vincenza. In the neighborhood of Venice, where he died, are many edifices that he built. He was so highly esteemed that his style became known as Palladian, and was long considered the most perfect.
Palladio is often called the last great architect of the Renaissance. His writings were considered the most authoritative on the principles of classic architecture throughout Europe, and his buildings were models of beauty during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and even up to this day. His buildings are described as cold and imaginative, but correct and elegant.
In giving the most rudimentary and general idea of the nature of the Renaissance style, we have done about all that these limited pages will allow. Germany had her great town-halls, Palaces and Castles in the style, and Spain developed a very beautiful Renaissance. All over the European world, the movement for classical art had a new-birth, and it was a period of extensive building nearly everywhere.
In France the Renaissance was slower to take root,because the Gothic was so much beloved by the French; and when it did come, it was mingled with the Gothic for a long time. But there are many wonderful and famous buildings of the Renaissance style in France,such as the famous chateau-like Chambord, the extensive palace of Fontainebleau, and the immense edifice of Versailles near Paris, which every one visits. One of these great monuments of France, however, the Louvre, was the finest and, although we have not the space to describe it in any detail, we must do a little more than to mention it.