Hidden treasures

The Public Gardens of Venice and the Inquisition

Historical Curiosities
Giardini_pubblici

The Public Gardens of Venice and the Inquisition

The Public Gardens of Venice, where you will also find the famous pavilions of the Biennale, is a perfect place for those who want a relaxing walk among the tree-lined streets, away from the bustle of St Mark's Square.

But where the entrance to the Gardens is, there was once a place that was definitely not relaxing: the church of San Domenico, complete with a large Dominican convent that was the seat of the Inquisition in Venice in 1560.

Many trials at the Inquisition in Venice took place of bizarre characters, alchemists, magicians, astrologers but also heretics, Jews and Jews officially converted to Catholicism but who secretly continued to profess their ancient religion – these were always uncomfortable and ‘suspicious ‘ groups periodically subjected to intolerance acts.

In front of the church was the San Domenico bridge (demolished when it was buried to create Via Garibaldi) and every year, on April 29, the day of St. Catherina from Siena – a Dominican nun - the burning of prohibited books took place on this bridge. The index of forbidden books was a list of texts whose content was considered by ecclesiastical inappropriate from a strictly theological, if not immoral point of view.

By decree of Napoleon's government in 1797, the Inquisition in Venice was abolished in 1806 and the convent of San Domenico was entirely demolished, along with other churches, to build new public gardens, designed by architect Giannantonio Selva.

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

Latest posts

Venice: What to see in the island of Burano

burano
Unknown places & works

The island of Burano is really a sight to behold and a great emotion for your heart: every year thousands of tourists venture into our ...

View

Venice: Discovering the island of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice, what to see and how to reach it

isola_di_san_giorgio_maggiore
Unknown places & works

One of you may have had the chance to photograph, while travelling in Venice, the marvelous panorama in front of the historic St Mark...

View

Treviso: The legendary origins of Treviso

treviso
Unknown places & works

It is well known knowledge that the more ancient a place is, the more legends there are telling of its founding: this is the case of th...

View

Venice: The iconostasis of St. Mark’s Basilica

iconostasi-basilica-san-marco-1
Unknown places & works

Entering St Mark’s Basilica in Venice, the first thing everyone does spontaneously is to lift their gaze up to the magnificent golden...

View

Top posts

Padua: Giotto’s Vices and Virtues in the Scrovegni Chapel

Carità-e-Invidia
Historical Curiosities

The Scrovegni Chapel in Padua contains one of the most significant masterpieces of all time: the great fresco cycle by Giotto. Among th...

View

Venice: The red stone of the 'Sotoportego de la peste'

sotoportego-de-la-peste
Mysteries & Legends

Walking around Venice along the narrow streets and across the squares, you could happen to notice strange slabs on the pavement... whic...

View

Venice: Titian's paintings in the Sacristy of the Basilica della Salute

tiziano-salute-venezia
Big Names

The Basilica della Salute is one of the most important religious places in Venice ... it was constructed to commemorate the end of the ...

View

Verona: The Giusti Garden and Goethe’s cypress

giardino-giusti
Unknown places & works

It is no coincidence that Italy has been dubbed 'the land of gardens' .... Every town, village or hamlet has a garden, perhaps with a c...

View