10 Shocking Facts about Venice that You Probably Didn't KnowBy Pictolic https://pictolic.com/en/article/10-shocking-facts-about-venice-that-you-probably-didnt-know
Venice in the view of tourists is a bright, incredibly picturesque old city, just created for romantic dates. But the guides provide standard information to the guests, while hiding many interesting and sometimes unpleasant things.
We offer you 10 facts about Venice, after which you will not stop loving its beautiful palaces and canals, but you will look at them a little differently.
You will be surprised, but the role of the sewerage of the historical part of the city is performed by the very channels through which tourists love to ride in a gondola to the songs of swarthy handsome men. All waste is dumped into the water and the stench is not felt only because the tides carry household and fecal waste into the sea.
But no guest of the city on the water is immune from the stench — it can come suddenly, during a strong low tide. Therefore, some tourists associate Venice with sea freshness, while others associate it with sewage miasma. As they say, who will be lucky. To reduce the risk of "sniffing" the real Venice to a minimum, it is recommended to go there in winter.
The famous Venetian masks came into fashion among the townspeople in the XVII century and it had nothing to do with the traditional holiday. Wearing masks gave the Venetians great freedom, as they could flirt with unknown women on the streets, visit gambling establishments and brothels secretly from their wives, bully passers-by and dress provocatively.
In the manufacture of masks, incredible success has been achieved here — some masters have offered products that can not only hide the face, but also change the voice beyond recognition. Over time, the city authorities realized that many dark deeds were done under the guise of masks and allowed them to be worn only in certain months. This rule gradually changed and turned into the same Venetian Carnival.
Among the many Venetian masks of various colors and designs, the "morettes" were particularly distinguished. These black masks had no visible fasteners and it seemed to the uninitiated person that they were held in some mystical way or, at best, glued to the face.
In fact, everything is much simpler — such a mask was fixed on the face with a special pin, which its owner held with her mouth. Of course, the owner of such an unusual decoration could not talk, so "moretta" was also called "mute maid" or "joy of husbands".
Guests of Venice are sure that the city, with the exception of the mainland, is cut by canals that act as water streets. In fact, it was the opposite — once upon a time, waterways were still streets, and then they were flooded with water.
To make sure of this, it is enough to look at the old part of the city from a bird's-eye view. It is very likely that the city has sunk under water, and its arteries, such as the Grand Canal, were once wide streets and avenues. Modern Venice is located on 118 islets and from a great height its shape resembles a fish.
Before you go to Venice, you need to be well acquainted with the rules in force in this tourist city. There are incredibly many restrictions for guests and locals here and you can earn an impressive fine without much difficulty.
In the city, you can not feed pigeons, sit or lie on St. Mark's Square (except benches), eat on the same square, ride bicycles, scooters and skateboards in the center, swim in the canals. Although, after our story about drains, the last rule is quite easy to follow. Yes, violators are expected to be fined from 50 to 500 euros.
Venetians are born on water, live surrounded by water and find eternal rest also among water. The most famous cemetery in Venice, San Michele, is located on an island in the middle of the lagoon. Its area is very limited, so the dead do not manage to lie in the ground for long.
Every 7-10 years, the remains are removed from graves and crypts, burned in a crematorium and placed in urns, placed in the columbarium of the island. There are always contenders for the vacant place, so we can say that the Venetian dead rent their last resting places.
Travelers who have the opportunity to compare Venice with the rest of Italy's regions immediately notice that this ancient city is strikingly different from other places in the country in architecture, the mentality of the inhabitants and even traditional cuisine, which has dishes much more interesting than pizza and pasta.
This is due to the fact that Venice has been an independent republic for many centuries, powerful and impressive in size. The Republic of Venice existed from the end of the VII to the end of the XVIII century and ceased to exist after the Napoleonic Wars. At first, the decaying country became part of the Austrian Empire, and then it was annexed to Italy.
It turns out that Venice has a double, which is located in the other hemisphere. In 1999, the Venice Casino opened in Las Vegas, around which a picturesque corner of an ancient European city was recreated. There are "medieval" houses and bridges, canals and even singing gondoliers.
It sounds ridiculous, but some tourists, comparing the American Venice with the original one, claim that they like the copy in Las Vegas much more. Maybe because the American version never smells of sewage and no one forbids chewing hot dogs while standing on the bridge?
A beautiful city on the water is constantly being flooded and every year this happens more and more often. If earlier the so-called "aqua alta" (high water) came to the city 8-9 times a year, now this unpleasant phenomenon can be repeated up to 100 times!
It's a shame, but the main attraction of Venice — St. Mark's Square - suffers most from the "aqua alta", since it is located at the lowest point of the city. On the same day, you can walk across the paved square without getting your feet wet, and a few hours later you can already cross it ankle-deep in water.
Venetians, thriving mainly due to tourism, do not forget to tell the whole world how guests are killing their beautiful city. In 2009, an action took place during which a boat procession decorated with mourning paraphernalia passed along the Grand Canal to the city administration.
A symbolic coffin of Venice, covered with its official flag, was installed on the first boat. With this event, local activists wanted to draw the attention of the authorities to the fact that the city's population is rapidly decreasing, since people cannot coexist with crowds of tourists. It's true — there are no more than 55 thousand indigenous people left in the central part of the "pearl of the Adriatic".
If nothing changes, then in just 20 years there will be only tourists and employees serving them in Venice. A sad joke is popular in the city that the main population of Venice is tourists. Alas, the fact that Venice is changing and not for the better is hard to dispute. Therefore, if you want to catch the very romantic flavor of the fantastic beauty and atmosphere of the place, do not hesitate and get ready for the road right now!
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