Neptune Offering Gifts to Venice is a famous painting by artist Giovanni Battista Tiepolo.
"Under the Ten torture, under the Three burial": this is how Venetians used to sum up the power of the two much-feared magistracies known as the Council of Ten and the Three Chiefs. In the Doge's Palace, the Sala delle Quattro Porte, or Room of Four Doors, was the place through which you had to pass to gain access to the rooms used by the principal organs of government: the Sala del Collegio, Sala del Senato, Sala del Consiglio dei Died and Sala dei Tre Capi, reached through the Atrio Quadrato. To replace Tintoretto's fresco in the Sala delle Quattro Porte, severely damaged by the damp, Tiepolo painted a canvas of controversial date (but probably around 1758), that fits in perfectly with the nearby 16th-century paintings and pictures by Veronese. Venice is a beautiful queen leaning on the lion of St. Mark and receiving gifts from Neptune, god of the sea, from whose cornucopia spill gold coins, pieces of coral and pearls. Tiepolo had always taken particular care over the representation of jewelry, and especially pearls and cameos. The pearl, which was extremely popular in the 18th century, had always represented the supremacy of Venice over the sea. Interesting too is the presence of coral, almost ignored by Venetian craftsmen until the 1700s, when a well-known local personage revived its working. Nearing the end of its existence, Venice still celebrated itself as queen of the sea, conjuring up the times when the city could call the Adriatic Sea "our gulf."
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