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History and Anecdotes

Venetian Courtyard, from c. 1890

Venice’s history is as extraordinary as Venice itself, with often the same fairy tale quality.

An Introduction, and some facts

The city that emerged from the sea like the goddess of love

Seeing Venice

Canals, squares and palazzi


The First City of Modern Europe


A Candle in a Dark Age


The First Crusades and a Constitution


A Quarter and a Half of the Roman Empire


Genoese Wars and the Mainland Empire


Serenissima in Spite of Everything


A Decline to Remember

1797 and onwards

Just Another Provincial Capital

Venice Timeline

From Alaric the Goth to the Present

The Sensuality of Venetian art

It’s all about the light and colour

A Day in 18th-century Venice

The Venetian noblewoman in the time of Casanova

A Doge's Life

Gormenghast, with Canals

History: 1000BC to AD 568

The Invention of Venice


Publisher, Humanist and Scholar

All the Doges

from 697—1797


Venice's washed-up nobility

Bocche dei Leoni

'Mouths of Truth'


Venice's secular saint

Bucintoro (Bucentaur)

The Doge's State Barge

Byron goes swimming

Venice makes him a new man

Caffé Florian

Venetian coffee culture

Campo dei Mori

Three 'Moors' and a camel, too

Castellani vs Nicollotti

West Side Story, Venetian style

Coffee and cake

Venetian essentials

Commedia dell' arte

The theatre of the masks

Caterina Cornaro

Queen of Cyprus

Feast of the Twelve Marys

Love fest

Antonio Foscarini

A patrician executed for love

Fra Mauro

Venice's famous map-making monk

Gobbo di Rialto

The Hunchback in the Market


Venice's most enduring symbol

Greeks in Venice

A long history

Harry's Bar

Where Hemingway Drank

Historical and artistic terms

Words, words, words

Invasion of the Body Snatchers

The race for relics

Jews in Venice

The world's first Ghetto

Lazzaretto Novo

A Quarantine station, now Venice's biggest archaeological site

Lazzaretto Vecchio

The world's first quarantine island

Legend of St Mark

Pax tibi Marce, evangelista meus

Legend of St Ursula

Carpaccio's series in the Accademia

Lion Fever

And no two are alike

More than 101 Dalmatians

Venice's Adriatic friends

Murano Glass

Heart of Glass

Palazzo Ducale: Secret Itinerary

Behind gilded scenes


The first professional architect


From saint to trousers

Piazzetta San Marco

And its two famous columns

Marco Polo

Teller of a 'million' tales

Ponte dei Pugni

The Bridge of Fists


'The world's most haunted island'

Prostitutes and Courtesans

Big business back in the day


The mother of all casinos

John Ruskin

And the Stones of Venice

San Simeone Profeta (or Grande)

And Venice’s Sweeney Todd

San Zaccaria's Naughty Nuns

18th-century life in the convent

Sant' Antonin

Pigs and an elephant

Santa Lucia

A train station, a song, and a saint

Paolo Sarpi

Venice's great rebel priest

Save Venice Inc

Americans to the rescue

La Sensa

The Marriage to the Sea

St Lorenzo Giustiniani

Venice's saintly first patriarch

Statue of Colleoni

The Statue in front of San Marco

Giovanni Francesco Straparola

The Father of Fairy Tales

Street Talk

How to tell a ramo from a salizzada

The Black Death

Venice in 1348

The First Assembly Line

The Secret of the Serenissima's Success

The Future of Venice

Keeping its head above the waters

The Legend of St Mark's Ring

Venice’s saint vs a boatload of devils

The Old Woman with a Mortar

How to thwart a revolt

The Step on the Neck Legend

The story that enraged Martin Luther

Venice in Peril

Keeping the old girl afloat

Who is buried in St Mark’s tomb?

Some say it’s Alexander the Great

The Zeno Brothers

Carlo the hero, and two who might have gone to America

Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Image by Library of Congress, no copyright restrictions