The current entrance to the hospital in Venice originally housed the Scuola Grande di San Marco, an important confraternity and one of the six Scuole Grandi of Venice. In the early 19th century it was turned into a military hospital by the then Austrian rulers of Venice, and later it became a civilian hospital.
The facade dates back to the late 15th century, and is one is one of the marvels of Venetian renaissance architecture.
If one examines the walls of this building after dark with a torch, all sorts of little wonders appears. The stone work is littered with graffiti, most of which are probably fairly old.
Here are some of those I found one evening.
This looks like a 18th or early 19th century ship with several masts. The naval past of Venice is evident.
Another wooden ship, probably a war ship as it has portholes for guns.
Yet another ship, but this graffiti might not have been finished. It looks a bit rudimentary compared to the others.
Here’s a fairly long writing, which I cannot really read, except that it says Venezia at the end.
Some mixed scribbles, including a few years: 1745 and 1872. Of course, a year is just a number, it could have been written any time. There’s also an @ in the middle.
This graffiti is made by a different technique than scratching the stone. It shows at least two gondolas, on with a felze which is a type of cabin that mostly fell out of use in the 19th century.
There’s also a year there: 1670 or maybe 1690.
Here too is a (partial) gondola, but at least the ferro is clear.
A five pointed star, whatever that might mean.