Articles in English:
Straipsniai lietuvių kalba :
Italian Influence in/on Lithuania
ARCHITECTURE ON GAONO STREET
The architectural expression of Vilnius historical homes is multi-layered. A pure style is rare. It is very difficult to mention the direct influence of Italian architecture on each individual house. Despite that, we can ascertain that the XVI Century renaissance and XVII-XVIII baroque style from Italy came through Hungary, Czech Republic, or Poland, and after reaching Vilnius was transformed, achieving the proportions common to the local architectural traditions and distinctive interpretation of Italian classical architectural form.
There is little data about the historical development of Vilnius Old Town house architecture. One can trace the fragments of former stages under the exterior architectural layers while performing the studies of architectural, polychromic décor. Such data allows preparation of retrospectives of former architectural styles. It must be mentioned that at the stage of the beginning of XIX Century classicism and the beginning XX Century Romanticism (or the so-called Eclectic period), the architectural expression of many houses was mixed, getting rid of many features and fragments of XVI, XVII Centuries which were the signals of Italian architectural influence at the end of the XIX Century.
After Lithuania became ruled by the Russian Empire, efforts were made to change architectural proportions and stylistic décor according to Russian architectural traditions, trying to drag up the architectural expression of Vilnius to the standards of the Russian Empire.
The common peculiarities of the historical architectural development of Vilnius is reflected in the houses Number 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 of Gaono Street. Those houses display all the trials common to the majority of Vilnius houses. The XVI Century fires and XVII-XVIII wars created the conditions for the stylistic renovation of the houses.
The XVI Century Renaissance retrospective seen in Goano Number 4 allows us to see how the building looked when it was bought by Vilnius Capitula (Epsicopal College) in 1674 as a student hostel. Retrospective of subsequent centuries the reconstructions done by new owners.
The house marked Number 6 is famous because Vilnius goldsmiths resided there in XVI-XVII Centuries. It is said that the famous Vilnius Goan Elijah Ben Solomon Zalmon (1720-1797) lived in that house. The architectural expression of the house was formed in XVII-XVIII Century. The decoration of the second-floor windows fa?ade was found during investigation and restored in the same pattern as the XVIII Century baroque period. The baroque décor was removed from the fa?ade during the period of XIX Century classicism.
Goano Number 8 survived as it was in the baroque stage of the middle of the XVIII Century, except for the shop windows on the first floor which were changed at the beginning of the XX Century.
Building Number 7 is famous because it houses the Stikliai Restaurant and Hotel. The facades of the house show the examples of the gothic style of the XVI Century renaissance and XVIII century baroque fragments, proving the multi-layered architecture of the building. The XVI Century renaissance portal was removed in the middle of the XIX Century, and according to the data available, was restored at the end of the XX Century.
Building Number 5 has a sreet fa?ade that is an example of the historicism period of the end of the XIX Century. You can also see the architectural elements of the XVII Century fa?ade.
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