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Discover the Jewish Ghetto!

If you come to Venice you must visit the Jewish Ghetto.
We propose to all our customers to visit it for two reasons:
is the oldest in Europe and it represents the popular tradition of the city.

I’ll write you some historical notes.

Although the Jewish quarter is quite small, there are 5 synagogues belonging to 5 different Jewish communities, with different uses, religious rites, spoken languages.

The Ghetto is divided into New and Old. In the part of the Old Ghetto you can find the synagogues of the German school (the oldest), of the Italian school (a very simple building because the Italian Jews were the poorest), and the Canton School (the only one that you can recognize from the outside for the small wooden dome). In the New Ghetto there are the two synagogues of the Levantine School and the Ponentine School both of Sephardic rite (the Sephardi are the Jews from the Iberian Peninsula), still used for the cult of religion. Both Synagogues can be visited.

In 1516 (the year of the foundation of the Ghetto) it was closed by two gates so that only the Jews remained inside. The gates were closed at sunset and reopened at dawn.
With the advent of racial laws, from 1938 the Jews were deprived of their civil rights. Of the 246 Jews deported only 8 returned home.

Since 2014, the city of Venice has also joined the "Pietre d'inciampo" project. Around the city, in front of some houses you will find brass tags attached to the paving of the city with engraved names to remember the Jews killed in the Nazi camps.

I'll help you with the map to see the position

Did you know that the word Ghetto is of Venetian origin?

It comes from the term "Getto" whose meaning was foundry, a district of Venice where the foundries were located and where the Jews had settled there. That land, which was a waste dump of foundries so it was a degraded area, is assigned by the Republic to the Jews, it is not they who choose it. It is the German pronunciation that determines the sound "Ghetto"


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