RIZZO, Antonio
(b. ca. 1430, Verona, d. ca. 1499)

Monument of Niccolò Tron

Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, Venice

Niccolò Tron was the Doge of Venice between 1466 and 1473. His funeral monument is on the left wall of the presbytery of the Frari's Basilica. A rich merchant, Tron donated his wealth to the Venetian Republic to help it in time of crisis, meriting, beyond the dogate, an everlasting memorial. He was the first Doge to be represented as in life, standing on his funeral monument, whereas previously all had been portrayed lying in death. The monument, in size and structure, is the grandest work of the Venetian Renaissance. It was conceived and executed by the Veronese Antonio Rizzo.

22 statues, divided into four orders, lighten the bulk of the monument. In the first order, at the centre, is the Doge, standing, with Faith on his left and Charity on his right. These two are exquisitely worked, worthy sisters to the famous Eve by the same Rizzo in the Ducal Palace. In the second, at the sides, two warriors hold the shield of the Tron family with the epigraph in the centre and two bas-reliefs on either side. In the third the Doge rests on the sarcophagus that is adorned by the three statues of Prudence, Wisdom and Fortitude, and on the sides are Song and Harmony. In the fourth are seven other statues embodying other virtues or allegories. The great round arch cuts off any upward line and encloses in solemn grandeur the entire new Renaissance concept.

In the lunette is the Risen Christ, with the Annunciation at the sides.