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Anecdotes and Curiosities about Venice and the Veneto region: secrets revealed by a tour guide
Discover, through the legends and mysteries told by our tour guide Francesca, a different side of this wonderful region.
Hidden Treasures is a weekly column on venetoinside dedicated to those who wish to learn about legends, secrets and mysteries of the hidden Venice and the Veneto region... Curated by Francesca – an expert tour guide from Venice – Hidden Treasures wants to share the hidden treasures of Venice and Veneto through anecdotes, secrets, legends, mysteries and curiosities, a different and rarely discussed side of Venice, the Venetian lagoon and the Veneto region.
History and folklore, mysterious places and famous works of art, monuments and ancient traditions: our guide will open for you the doors to discover all the hidden secrets of Venice and Veneto! With an original series of stories, anecdotes and curiosities of Venice and its region, all based on a foundation of historical fact, week after week Francesca will reveal fascinating aspects of history, art, culture and the traditions of some incredible places.
Hidden Treasures is a real guide to the lesser-known Venice and Veneto to uncover the mysteries still hidden. Make yourself comfortable! Expect an exciting reading based on anecdotes, legends and hidden Venice secrets that will tantalize your curiosity even more about the city, the lagoon and its wonderful region.
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The strange altar of the Basilica della Salute in Venice
On 21 November Venice celebrates the Madonna della Salute, which commemorates the end of a terrible plague, which between 1630 and 1631 decimated the population of Venice. In those days no one knew exactly how the disease was unleashed and all attempts to stop the infection were unsuccessful, so the government of the Venice Republic made a vow to the Virgin Mary, promising that if the plague was finally over, they would build a new church dedicated to her. So on 21 November 1631 the first stone of the new building was laid, designed by the great architect Baldassare Longhena. Inside you can admire a very special altar designed by Longhena. It consists of three marble statues, carved by the Flemish artist Just Le Court. The left figure represents Venice, a beautiful girl who asks for help to the stop the plague from the Virgin Mary; the central figure is in fact the Madonna and Child, to whom the church is dedicated; and finally the third figure on the right - a nasty old and ragged woman – represents the plague, who runs in a terrified way in front of the Virgin Mary. The altar also houses a Byzantine icon of the Madonna della Salute or Mesopanditissa, who, from the island of Crete, was brought to Venice by Francesco Morosini in 1670, when they had to cede the island to the Turks.
Venice: The Sacristy of the Church of St. Stephen's
Unknown places & works
In one of the most beautiful and sunniest squares in Venice there stands the imposing Church of St. Stephen, erected at the behest of t...View
Vicenza: The Bridge of the Alpini in Bassano del Grappa
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Venice: The tomb of Doge Andrea Gritti in the church of San Francesco della Vigna
For the few daring visitors who decide to head to the Castello district, away from the crowds swarming around Piazza San Marco and the ...View
Venice: The graffiti of the ancient merchants on Fondaco dei Tedeschi in Venice
Each building located along the Grand Canal has an amusing story or a mystery to tell... After having been the Post Office building for...View
Padua: Padua, the Iliad, the Aeneid and Dante's Inferno
Mysteries & Legends
What do the Italian city of Padua and Dante's Inferno have in common? Apparently nothing, but if you dig in the medieval legends you wi...View
Venice: The Scuola Grande di San Rocco in Venice as the film set of 'Casanova'
In 2005 the film ‘Casanova' was shot in Venice, directed by Lasse Hallström and which starred the late Heath Ledger. Among the many ...View