Hidden treasures

The ghost of the Chinese wife of Marco Polo

Mysteries & Legends

The ghost of the Chinese wife of Marco Polo

Legend has it that, during his stay in China, the famous Venetian merchant Marco Polo was in love with one of the daughters of the Great Khan and, after marrying her, he brought her with him to Venice. The young girl was sweet and polite, but didn't feel comfortable in the lagoon city, and also became the victim of jealousy on the part of the Marco's sisters.

In 1298, when Marco Polo was captured in battle by the Genoese, the envious sisters in law told the oriental princess that her husband was dead; reeling from pain the girl set fire to her clothes and jumped from the windows of Marco Polo's house into the underlying canal.

The legend says that, sometimes, if at night you pass through the Milion courtyard (where Polo's houses stood) you can see a white figure floating in the air or hear a sweet song of Eastern origin.

There are no certain documents about this story (there is little information on Marco Polo's life), but a few years ago, during excavations in the foundations of the Malibran Theatre (built on Polo's old houses), human remains belonging to an Asian woman buried with objects of clear Chinese origins and a tiara with the imperial coat were found.

To listen to other fascinating anecdotes, visit the places where they took place and have a unique experience, you can enquire about the availability of our guide Francesca who will organise a private guided tour of mysteries and legends of Venice with you!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

Latest posts

Venice: What’s the traditional Redentore food?

Local Traditions

The number one traditional celebration, celebrated every year the third weekend of July, Redentore gives thanks for the end of the terr...


Venice: The village of Dolo and its inhabitants

Figures of speech

In the province of Venice there is a small village, Dolo, which doesn’t have a great reputation... The dialect expression ‘Ma te vi...


Venice: The crypt of the church of San Simeone Piccolo

Unknown places & works

As soon as you leave the train station in Venice, you will see the imposing dome of the church of San Simeone Piccolo, renovated in the...


Vicenza: The legend of the Dwarves of Villa Valmarana ai Nani

Mysteries & Legends

Villa Valmarana ai Nani in Vicenza, Italy, is one of the best known and most visited villas in the Veneto region thanks to the frescoes...


Top posts

Treviso: The Jewish cemetery in Conegliano

Unknown places & works

Not everyone knows that the city of Conegliano was once home to one of the most important Jewish communities in the Veneto region, both...


Belluno: Tiziano Vecellio’s birthplace in Pieve di Cadore

Big Names

In the heart of the UNESCO-enlisted Dolomites, there is a small, picturesque village: Pieve di Cadore. It is a special place for the hi...


Vicenza: The Bridge of the Alpini in Bassano del Grappa

Historical Curiosities

If you are passionate about bridges, you cannot miss out on a visit to the Bridge of the Alpini in Bassano del Grappa, in the Province ...


Venice: A high relief of Hercules on the façade of Tintoretto’s house

Mysteries & Legends

In the Cannaregio district in Venice stands the house of the famous painter Jacopo Robusti, known as 'Tintoretto' (1519-1594). On the f...