Hidden treasures

The Library of the Island of San Lazzaro degli Armeni in the Venice lagoon

Unknown places & works

The Library of the Island of San Lazzaro degli Armeni in the Venice lagoon

The island of San Lazzaro degli Armeni in the Venice lagoon is a fascinating place and rich in history.

In 1717 the Republic of Venice allowed a group of Armenian monks, fleeing from Greece guided by the Abbot Mechitar, to occupy the monastery on the small island of San Lazzaro, abandoned for many years. The monks restored the buildings and founded a printing press to spread the Armenian language and culture, and later they also created a library .

The Library of the Armenians is composed of many halls, which contain about 170,000 volumes, 4,500 of which are manuscripts (one dating back to the 6th century A.D.).

The hall where the most precious manuscripts are kept is in a controlled atmosphere and has a circular shape, so that anyone standing in the middle of the hall talking in a loud voice, can distinctly hear the echo of his words as if he were in a confined space.

Many legends exist about this mystical and rather sinister place, including one in particular, which claims that one of the volumes is bound in human skin.

The island is open to visitors every day, and an Armenian monk will guide you to discover its treasures.

The island of San Lazzaro degli Armeni can be easily reached by public transport from Venice, water bus - line 20 departing from San Marco to San Zaccaria. Buy the ticket that best suits your needs and immerse yourself in the charm of this extraordinary island in the Venetian Lagoon!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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