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A palace is a posh house, usually occupied by royalty or major nobility. The word comes from classical Latin, palatio, which was a posh Roman house, more usually in a city than the countryside, although "Fishbourne" outside Chichester in Hampshire, England, is the exception that "proves" the rule. Venice, for its part, is littered with palazzos -- large houses on the canal-side in which entire families lived, and often were also their warehouses, for goods to be stored and traded on the ground (water-level) floor, whilst life went on up-stairs.

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