The Grand Tour in Venice - Page 40



THE GRAND TOUR IN VENICE
Fig. 17 Sir John Everett
Millais, Wedding Cards,
Jilted, ca. 1854, oil on
canvas, 22.7 x 17.4 cm,
Private Collection.
38
THE GRAND TOUR IN VENICE
39
EFFIE RUSKIN
While John Ruskin was busy studying
Venetian architecture and gathering
material for Stones of Venice, his neglected
young wife Effie was sightseeing, socializing
and recording her much more down-toearth impressions of the city in her letters
to her mother (fig. 17). The Ruskins stayed
six months in the city, long enough for
Effie to experience the hardships of the
Venetian winter and observe the poverty
of the Venetian noble families and the
dilapidation of their palaces but also to enjoy
the pleasures of a trip to the Lido on a sunny
day (fig. 18).
Effie describes a visit to the Lido:
Charlotte Ker did not go out today so Joh n and
th e gondolier rowed m e o ver to th e Lido...
I wish ed to see th e open sea and we walked o ver
th e island to th e Jew’s burying grou nd wh ere th ey
form erly were all obliged to be buried...
A fleet of Venetian fish ing boats literally flew
past us with th eir beautiful sails spread. Th ey are
of rich orange colour with a cross and wh en th e su n
sh ines you cannot conceive of anyth ing more vivid
in colour or more elegant in form.  Joh n is very
busy in th e Doge’s Palace all day and yet h e has
only drawn one capital of one pillar and th ere is
som eth ing like hu ndreds on each side (fig. 19).

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