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Villa Emo

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Villa Emo is an Italian villa built in the Veneto near the village of Fanzolo di Vedelago by Andrea Palladio in 1559 for the Emo family of Venice. Until its sale in 2004 it was still in the hands of the Emo family.

It is one of the most accomplished of the Palladian villas, done after 20 years of Palladio'Architecture" title ="Architecture">architecture. It has been praised for the simple mathematical relationships expressed in its proportions, both of the elevation and the dimensions of the rooms on the plan.

The house is framed by two colonnaded wings which originally housed agricultural activities, for this was a true working villa like Villa Badoer and several other designs by Palladio. A long walk made of large square paving stones leads to the front of the house. Instead of the usual staircase or staircases going up to the main front door, the house has a wide ramp with a gentle slope. The exterior is simple, bare of any decoration. In contrast, the interior is richly decorated with colorful frescoes, done by Giambattista Zelotti, who was also responsible for similar work in other villas by Palladio.

The plan of Villa Emo presented in Palladio's Quattro libri corresponds nearly exactly to what was really built. Palladio was unusually brief in his comments on the villa.


  • Boucher, Bruce. Andrea Palladio: The Architect in his Time. New York: Abbeville Press, 1998.
  • Rybczybski, Vitold. The Perfect House: A Journey With the Renaissance Master Andrea Palladio. New York: Scribner, 2002.
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