Hidden treasures

Poveglia, the ill-fated island in the Venetian Lagoon

Unknown places & works

Poveglia, the ill-fated island in the Venetian Lagoon

These days everyone is talking about the news of the Venetians vigorous fight to save Poveglia, a small island in the lagoon of Venice, close to Venice Lido. There are speculation fears about private entrepreneurs intentions on the island, which for many centuries was linked to the fate of the Republic of Venice.

The island also had a strong and strategic importance during the war of Chioggia, (that broke out in 1379 between the two maritime republics of Genoa and Venice) as it was used as a military outpost. All civilians who lived there were 'politely asked' to leave it to make way for the various arms: the island was never inhabited again until in 1700 it became a hospital for the many victims of the plague in order to prevent the spread of infection in the city. The patients died in large numbers, as evidenced by the numerous human remains that are often found when digging on the island.

Over the years many legends were born regarding the island and its dead, all linked to some sort of malevolent essence which has supposedly permeated it, and perhaps that is why in 1922 a hospital for the elderly and sick people, who no one else wanted to look after, was created.

Francesca, a licensed guide in Venice and the author of this fascinating article, will be happy to share this story and many other curious anecdotes about this charming city: history, legends and mysteries of Venice in an exclusive private tour!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

Latest posts

Vicenza: The Odeon cinema in Vicenza, one of the oldest in the world

Historical Curiosities

Perhaps not everyone knows that in Vicenza there is one of the oldest cinemas in the world, still open today! Originally the hall was a...

View

Venice: The bells of St. Mark’s Bell Tower in Venice

Historical Curiosities

St Mark’s Bell Tower in St. Mark's Square is one of the symbols of Venice, but not everyone knows that the original building collapse...

View

Treviso: Carlo Scarpa’s Brion Tomb in Altivole

Big Names

Near Asolo, the reign of the queen Catherine Corner, there is a small village called Altivole... Its cemetery is renowned for containin...

View

Venice: The cell no. 10 in the Pozzi prison of the Doge's Palace in Venice

Unknown places & works

In the 1980s, during the restoration of the so-called ‘Pozzi’ (wells), the underground prison cells in the Doge's Palace, the tenth...

View

Top posts

Venice: The Rialto Bridge in Venice and the Doge's daughter

Mysteries & Legends

There are many stories and legends related to the famous Rialto bridge on the Grand Canal in Venice, but few people know the one that h...

View

Venice: Campo delle Gatte in Venice

Unknown places & works

The names of the streets in Venice can be very unusual… For example, when you walk around the Castello district, you will come across...

View

Venice: The Doge Enrico Dandolo and the conquest of Constantinople

Big Names

The history of the Venetian Republic was inextricably linked to the Doge's charismatic personality, but also adventurers and traitors, ...

View

Venice: The three wellheads of the San Trovaso Church

Historical Curiosities

In the charming Dorsoduro district in Venice, there is the ancient church of Saints Gervasio and Protasio, called San Trovaso in Veneti...

View