In Christian scripture, Archangel Gabriel is God's messenger (announcing to Mary that she will give birth to Christ). Michael is the commander of God's troops, fighting the Dragon in the Book of Revelation. Raphael's name means "God's healing."
This is the Angel Raphael and the boy is Tobias, whose story begins on page 70 of the novel and runs alongside Miss Garnet's own. The statue stands above the door of the Chiesa dell'Angelo Raffaele on the waterfront. In the first picture below (left) you can see the quayside where Miss Garnet alighted from the water-taxi.
The church is marked '2' on the map at the back of the book (Afterword p. 7).
The Ponte de Cristo. See p.331 bookmark.
A picture of this unimportant-looking brick bridge can be seen here
The procession, as Miss Garnet discovers later (p.23), is in honour of Epiphany, which takes place on January 6th. This is a Christian festival commemorating the visit of the three kings, or magi, to the infant Jesus, and celebrating the showing forth of the child to the world.
St. Mark's Square is the main square of Venice (marked '5' on the map at the back of the book (Afterword p. 7).
The author's own first reaction to the sight of Santa Maria della Salute was as emotional as her heroine's: Salley Vickers "fell in love" when she saw it. (See "My Venice", p.8 of Afterword at the back of the book.)
Alchemy is most often thought of as a means of attempting to turn base metal into gold, but it was also a philosophy and discipline, aimed at transforming the soul and attaining immortality. Carl Gustav Jung, the famous Swiss psychiatrist and one-time colleague of Freud wrote about it as such, and the author of "Miss Garnet" worked as a Jungian analytical psychologist. Perhaps the atheist, repressed Miss Garnet is unnerved by a subject that both hints at the supernatural and suggests examination of the soul, and that is why she hurries past the window.
Probably the most famous church in Venice, St Mark's Basilica is not the cathedral. It was originally the Doges' chapel. (See picture of St Mark's square, p.20 bookmark , above.) The campanile is the bell-tower.
Giovanni Bellini, Italian Renaissance painter 1430-1516, painted several versions of the Virgin Mary with the infant Jesus. This one, described later (p.150) as having been stolen from the church of Madonna dell'Orto, is pictured here: Madonna and Child c.1480.