Monday, October 13, 2008

I was at friend's house a while back and spotted these old books up on the shelf.
I love old books. The older, the better.
These books were of the encyclopedia type:
published in 1879.

So what does a "gondola fanatic" do when he comes across a set of 120 year old encyclopedias?
He grabs volume VIII. The one covering GLA through HOR.
Because they've been around practically forever, and because they are among the most recognizable boats in the world, there's a cyclopaedic definition for "gondola".
And because it's such a cool boat, there's an illustration in there too!

My 11 year old daughter helped me take a couple photos of what I thought was the most important page of all.
Chances are that I'm breaking some copyright guideline by posting these images.
But then again, if anyone reading this was involved in publishing these volumes back in 1879, chances are they won't mind seeing their work revived.
Mmm, and if they do, they'll probably have a tough time chasin' me down.

The description is fairly accurate, but the dimensions are off.
Sure, there were gondolas as short as 25 feet long in Venice, but they were there hundreds of years earlier. by the 1800's, gondolas had reached or at least neared the 36-foot length.

What's most surprising, is the apparent absence of a forcola.
Looking at the illustration, the greatest conclusion we can draw, is that, visually, things probably got a lot more accurate in these publications after photographs were incorporated.

1 comment:

grigory-never-get-there said...

Didn't you know that gondoliers pole off the canal floor? heh. Anyways, I heard that the foot makes for a good forcola in a time of need.