Ghosts and legends in Venice2018-10-31T07:43:09+00:00

Palazzo Ca’ Dario

The House that kills

Its spectacular marble staircases and the formidable asymmetrical facade will probably mislead you. Palazzo Ca Dario  was written about by John Ruskin, and immortalized by Monet and it is in fact a truly remarcable Palazzo on Venice’s Grand Canal.

However, this palace is sadly known also for its bloody fame. Since 1494 Ca’ Dario witnessed mayhem, lost fortunes, and disgrace: several of its owners died in tragic circumstances..

The last owner has been Raul Gardini, died suicidal in 1993, and since then no one else owned the palace.

Could it have something to do with the Gothic marble-encrusted all-seeing oculi windows that compose the formidable facade?

Take me there

instagram © courtesy of @whowhatwhit 

St. Mark’s Baker

‘el fornareto’

Around 1507 the baker Piero Tasca found a noble on the ground, daggered to death. Wrongly accused for his murder, the poor baker was tortured and forced to confess a crime he hadn’t committed. He was therefore sentenced to death, but after two weeks since the execution the actual murderer confessed.

Since this sad fact the judges were always reminded by the formula “Recordève del poaro fornareto” (= remember the poor baker) before sentencing someone to death, in order to be sure not to make such a tragic mistake again.

Really! This sentence is still in use (for sure my granma does!!)

© courtesy of @sebastienfritsch

St. Mark’s Rosebud

Every year, on the 25th of April, in St Mark’s square there is the Bocolo (= rosebud) celebration. Venetian men give a rosebud to their beloved ones, but where does this tradition come from? The legend says that Maria, the Doge’s daughter, was in love with Tancredi, but their relationship wasn’t approved by the Doge. To prove his valour, Tancredi decided (under Maria’s request) to go fight the Arabs in Spain with Carl Magnuns army.

© courtesy of @thomasstaub

Sadly, Tancredi was hit to death on the battlefield, close to a rosebush: before dying he picked a rose and asked his fellows to give it to Maria. On the 25th of April, the day after she had received the flower, Maria was found dead with the bloody rosebud on her chest.

The stone of bad luck

..or good luck??

If walking through Venice you do not want to risk some kind of misfortune you must keep in mind that there are some stones, inserted between the slabs of trachite that paved fields, squares and streets of the city, which should not be absolutely trampled.

One of these, according to what is said, even stopped one of the many plagues that stormed the Serenissima in past centuries. In particular, the reference would be directed to the plague of 1630 that just above that stone, red, fell defeated.

In that Sestiere of Castello there were no infected or dead: the inhabitants of the Corte Nova were all unscathed.

Take me there

about the author: Michele C.
(boutique hotel manager & Venice Local Expert)


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