The St Mark’s Basilica sits beside the Doge’s Palace in the eponymous St Mark’s Square, Venice. It had its roots as a temporary building to house relics from Alexandria, and was rebuilt many times over a few centuries. The facade of the basilica evolved greatly over time, as sea faring Venetians incorporated a great many features to the structure from their travels. The four bronze horses you see here are replicas of the Horses of Saint Mark, believed to be looted after the sacking of Constantinople in 1204. Napolean subsequently moved them to Paris in the late 1790s, to serve as inspiration for the quadriga atop the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel. The statues were then returned again in 1815. After much, ahem, horsing around, they now sit within the basilica for conservation purposes. The central statue above the horses is the Venice patron saint St. Mark. And underneath him is a winged lion, the mascot of Venice.