When, on 29th March 1516, the Venetian government decided to segregate the Jew in a limited and restricted area of the city, it unawarely gave birth to what would have become the very first ghetto in the world. Indeed the word ghetto, now used everywhere, has Venetian origins. If this has grabbed your attention, we will start a walk at Campo San Geremia, focused on the ghetto and its neighborhood.
That of the Jews is a long and tormented history, made of great sorrows and loss, of isolation and persecutions. The bond between Venice and the Jews has to be searched in the most ancient centuries of our history. Venice represents a bulwark of hope for people that cannot find peace nor home in a 16th century where Spain, France and UK have already expelled the Jews from their territories. That’s why the city of Venice decides to isolate the Jews instead of expelling them.
This gesture, driven by clear economical interests and far from being connected to what we today call tolerance, in the Europe of those days surely represents a positive exception. This is the reason why we can define the Venetian Ghetto as a place of paradoxes, suspended between tollerance and discrimination. These interesting contraddictions turned it into one of the most mysterious places of the city. If you want to dive into the Venice of the 16th century, if you want to know the dynamics of the Ghetto, if you want to find out the rules that controlled and dictated the life of the Jewish communities in and out of it, if you want to dip in an area of the city which is full of local charm and quiteness, this tour is the perfect solution for you!
We will take a relaxing walk through the three Ghetti (Old, New and Newish) at the discovery of the history and also the special architecture of the area.
We will meet each other in Campo San Geremia in front of the church.