Being a Republic, Venice never had a king. Instead, it was ruled by the doge - a word which comes from the same root as duce and duke.
Our Venice guide Laura pointed out pictures of the various doges in the Palazzo Ducale. They'll all gray-haired men! It was the practice to pick an old man as doge, to make sure that his reign would naturally be short. Here's more on doges, in the audio spot I sent from Venice.
Here, then are some pictures of the Doges of Venice.
Whoops! Better makes that "The DOGS of Venice."Hey, if Verona's top ruling family was so into dogs, why not see how the canine has thrived under Venetians?
But seriously, we all noticed more dogs in Venice than in the other cities we visited. They were better groomed, and very well behaved. I remember hearing just one dog barking during our time in La Serenissima. On our walk to the Rialto on Saturday morning, I loved seeing how dogs fit into daily routines. Couldn't help but take some doggy snapshots. This one below is one of my favorite pictures.
I just love the way this little one below is patiently waiting for its owner, who runs a vegetable stand at the Rialto market. No leash - dog knows to stay close. That's a box of mushrooms behind this lovely dog, labeled "funghi."
While most were small dogs, I did see a couple of larger animals, including this one who gallantly hiked up the steps to the Rialto bridge with owner and shopping cart.
Canine duo waiting while owners sip caffe at a bar.
Walking by a souvenir shop. See the little hand-written notice advertising toy gondole?