The Great Council Hall, in Venice, the sexiest voting room you’ll ever see

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The “Sala del Maggior Consiglio” is an impressively beautiful, huge hall of the Palazzo Ducale, and a magnificent example of the greatness of the Republic of Venice.

This gigantic room, one of the biggest halls in Europe, was the place of meeting of the most powerful governing body of the Serenissima: the “Great Council” or “Maggior Consiglio” which was in charge of voting laws, electing government representatives, etc.

Measuring an incredible 53,5m length, 25m width and 15,40m height, its size is the result of political choices that lead, over the centuries, to a constant increase in the number of members of the council: from 35 counsellors in 1143, to 1017 in 131, and to as much as a staggering 2746 members in 1527! The room hosting the men of the Council had, therefore, to be able to welcome them all at once.

Completed in 1309, it was destroyed for the last time in 1578 by one of the multiple fires occurring at the Palazzo Ducale over the centuries. As a sign of strength, power, and resilience, the Republic rebuilt the room and made it ornamented by the work of the best artists of the time: Paolo Veronese, Tintoretto, Jacopo Palma il Giovane, Francesco Bassano, Andrea Vicentino e Gerolamo Gambarato.

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