The Campanile in St Mark’s Square in Venice is the only non-original structure in the square, the original having collapsed in 1902, but the new structure is a faithful replica of the original, and still provides fine views of the city:
I asked our tour leader if the cause of the collapse of the Campanile had been an earthquake. No she replied, Venice is not subject to Earthquake activity. That very night we were woken at 4:00 a.m. by vigorous shaking of our hotel rooms, due to a magnitude 6.1 earthquake north of Bologna. Well she never claimed to be a seismologist.
In fact the actual direct cause of the actual collapse does not seem to have been an earthquake, although earthquake activity may well have contributed to the weakening of the structure over the years. Searching the internet the best report I could find of the event came from, of all places, The West Gippsland Gazette of 23 Sep 1902, which may be viewed here:
Amongst the photographs of the collapse are many genuine shots of the resulting debris:
but also many images claiming to show the actual collapse. In fact these can easily be seen to have been manipulated photographs, and the technology of the time would not have allowed a sharp rendition of this sort of action shot, even in the unlikely event of a camera being pointed in just the right direction at the time.
I thought this was likely to have been the earliest example of a photograph being “Phot0-shopped”, but there is another Italian example from hundreds of years earlier which may well have that honour, and that will be the subject of my next report.