The Palazzo Thiene and the Villa Thiene

The Palazzo Thiene and the Villa Thiene: case study

Palazzo and Villa Thiene

Andrea Palladio (c.1545-6)
Copyright: RIBA Library Drawings Collection

This drawing, sheet XIV/4, is of great interest to scholars of Palladio. It shows two different plans for separate commissions on a sheet of field studies. One is for the Palazzo Thiene in Vicenza, the other is for the Villa Thiene in Quinto.

The sheet of field notes shows details from the Forum of Nerva and the Temple of Minerva in Rome. It may have been produced around 1546 when Palladio was on one of his study trips to Rome and the surrounding countryside.

We know that at around that time he was travelling with the Thiene brothers, Marc'Antonio and Adriano. The Thiene family was probably the richest and most important in Vicenza. They had planned a grandiose palace project in the heart of the city, along with a weekend retreat in the country: these were to be the palazzo and the villa.

Palladio may have had this paper to hand when explaining his ideas for these two buildings to his clients.