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Stones of Venice

3.92  ·  Rating Details  ·  353 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
'Thank God I am here, it is a Paradise of Cities,' Ruskin wrote on his second visit to Venice in 1841. John Ruskin, Victorian England's greatest writer on art and architecture, believed himself to be an adoptive son of Venice. His feelings for this beautiful, melancholy city, damaged by war and in danger of being restored beyond recognition, is nowhere better expressed tha ...more
Hardcover, 168 pages
Published February 23rd 2004 by (first published 1853)
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Vittorio Ducoli
Jan 27, 2016 Vittorio Ducoli rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
La mirabile storia di una città oggi assassinata

Recentemente mi è capitato di parlare di Bruges la morta di Georges Rodenbach, e non ho potuto fare a meno di paragonare le atmosfere che l'autore ci offre, relative alla città sul finire del XIX secolo, e l'esperienza di visita odierna in una città diventata una delle mete del turismo internazionale.
Questo stridente contrasto lo si ritrova all'ennesima potenza confrontando la Venezia di oggi con le sublimi descrizioni della città decadente, dell
I patiently searched through 8 pages of links and found no dust jack thumbnail for this edition but I did find this amazing Ruskin page: If you can find the 1981 hard cover edition edited by Jan Morris you'll be very satisfied. Frankly, the unabridged three volume set was a bit overbearing, even for an art historian. Here is a reprint and I believe this is another If you visit ...more
Kathy Kattenburg
John Ruskin's knowledge and understanding of architectural form, function, style, and history is nothing short of astonishing. His detailed definitions of arches, buttresses, walls, ceilings, and architectural ornamentation is lucid even to a total architectural ignoramus such as myself. That technical knowledge is married to a lyrical writing style that is a joy to read--especially when he's writing about the cultural and historical contexts in which these architectural wonders existed.

This edi
A fantastic abridged version of Ruskin's three volume writings on Venice. An unconventional architecture, art, culture, and city guide for the academically inclined pessimist. His deprecating tone is always amusing to read.
I adored this book. I was shocked at the great combination of poetic evocation with nuts-and-bolts practicality - moving from his practical introduction to the basics of architecture, which helped me a lot, to his prose-poetry about the delights of travel in the pre-railroad era. It's like a textbook seamlessly becoming a book of poems.

All in all, it's not just a book on architecture, it's trying to make sense of the whole shape of European cultural history.
Dec 31, 2015 Anthony rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this abridged edition and only wished for pictures of the buildings Ruskin described, in addition to his own drawings. One can still feel the impact Ruskin's book must have had on art historical thought. His mordant put-down of the Renaissance is inspired! And subtly articulated. Reading this book provides a better understanding of how the reappraisal of the Middle Ages and Gothic architecture came about.
Apr 18, 2012 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Stones of Venice is an amazing and cantankerous work of architectural theory. Ruskin's take on the beauty or ugliness of certain buildings is fascinating, if somewhat insane. It's worth keeping in mind, though, that the original is over 1,000 pages long. Links' abridgement is a great effort, but some of Ruskin's lines of argument are lost.
In the first chapter I felt that John Ruskin and I were not destined to become fast friends. By page 81 I was consumed with the desire to punch him in the face. I cannot stand to finish this. The pomposity overwhelms me.
Ruth Fairbairn
Jul 02, 2015 Ruth Fairbairn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finally finished! Took a lot more concentration than I expected, but I like Ruskin's style and the accompanying diagrams are very useful.
Dec 20, 2012 Vanim is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: victorian
Even if you have no interest in architecture.... even if you've never been to Venice, Ruskin's passion and prose are compelling.
Evan Simpkins
Sep 20, 2012 Evan Simpkins rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Could it be the greatest book every written about a physical place?
Sep 26, 2014 Irina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Will have to visit Venice again and compare notes :)
Stephen Gamble
Aug 14, 2015 Stephen Gamble rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First - hats off to J G Links for abridging The Stones, Ruskin's original is so monumental it should not only be filed under 'Architecture' but actually count as architecture. Now I have read Links semidetached version I think I have got the jist and have no need to read the original - unless I ever end up incarcerated.

Not that Ruskin isn't readable, his prose is elegant and engaging, indeed he gets away with a lot of dull technical stuff by being elegant and engaging. There is an awful lot of
Anna Maria
Dec 15, 2009 Anna Maria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Was ever anyone more eloquent than Ruskin?
Jul 27, 2012 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jun 25, 2014 Sarah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Occasionally tedious, often difficult, but generally a very interesting, idiosyncratic view of Venice. A man not afraid to speak his mind, to express his general disgust of Renaissance art and 'modern' techniques for the restoration of paintings, and not afraid to admit when his text may be incomplete because he mislaid his notes!
Nov 09, 2014 Christiane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: venice
A bit heavy-going

This is not the easiest book to read due to Ruskin’s wordiness, his extremely flowery style and his attention to the most minute detail. He does drone on at times, especially in the chapter on St. Mark’s Basilica.

As the title implies, the emphasis is on the stones (i.e. the church of Torcello, St. Mark’s and the Doge’s Palace) and not so much on Venice itself. I feel that readers most likely to enjoy this book are lovers of art/architecture rather than those in love with the inc
Literally about the stones of Venice. This book is a work on the architectural properties and history of architecture in Venice, with an eye for establishing the standard. highly informative, but if you're not interested in the philosophy of classic architecture than this book isn't for you.
Reading Ruskin wax poetic about the most mundane aspects of Venetian architecture causes one's mind to wander off to the much more pleasent ways that could have been chosen to waste some time.
Dio Trapese
Sep 09, 2015 Dio Trapese rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
best book ever
Keith Miller
Stones of Venice by John Ruskin (2005)
Adrian Buck
Feb 02, 2013 Adrian Buck rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hobb-int
Good read ruined by appalling plates.
Elsyed Esmael
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John Ruskin was born on 8 February 1819 at 54 Hunter Street, London, the only child of Margaret and John James Ruskin. His father, a prosperous, self-made man who was a founding partner of Pedro Domecq sherries, collected art and encouraged his son's literary activities, while his mother, a devout evangelical Protestant, early dedicated her son to the service of God and devoutly wished him to beco ...more
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