The murazzi of Pellestrina

In the image below, you see the fish shape of Venice in the upper left hand corner, with the Lido to the right of the “tail” of Venice.


This image was sourced online


The last time I visited Chioggia, I got off the vaporetto at Pellestrina and spent some time just walking along the sea wall (murazzo) enjoying the quiet and sunshine. You can see what a narrow sliver of land Pellestrina is, with the Adriatic to the right, and the lagoon to the left.


Much of Pellestrina’s seafront is lined by a remarkable feat of 18th-century engineering known as the murazzi.  These massive sea walls, designed to protect Pellestrina and keep high seas from crashing into  the lagoon, represent Herculean handiwork from a preindustrial age.


A portion of the wall, seen from the vaporetto. Many people use the walkway as a place for walking or riding their bicycles.

Embedded into the wall is this incised marble with information regarding the massive structure. (Latin scholars, your help is sought to interpret the message which has come to us from centuries past.) 

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I was charmed by examples of recycling employed in the construction of the wall. I wonder where these lovely fragments came from, originally? Do they represent attempts to repair damage to the walls at some stage in its history?

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I’m really looking forward to getting back to Chioggia, and also exploring more of the murazzi in Pellestrina or Malamocco.




Filed under Venice

31 responses to “The murazzi of Pellestrina

  1. Nice post! I’ve been to Venice many Many times, but never heard of Murazzi. I’ll follow your steps next time I’m there, in a couple of months


  2. Bert

    What! Has nobody explained the date “puzzle”? The second date (1330) is not the date the walls were begun, but the years since the founding of the city (Venice), in the same way that in Roman times dates were given in years since the founding of Rome. Venice was founded, according to legend, in the year 421, so 1330 AUC (Ab Urbe Condita) is 1751 in the year of the Saviour (Anno Sal.).
    I don’t understand how I missed this post, Yvonne.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Next time in Venice I will go further….


  4. Beautiful wall. Love the details! On my next trip to Venice I have to make sure to wander out for more trips such as this. Always so interesting!


  5. Failed ‘O’ level Latin in the 1960s, but here goes: To conserve for ever this sacred estuary and town, we have placed colossal walls of stone to preserve the shore against the sea. Finished 1751 started 1330. (I could be completely wrong). Love the repairs. We both love wandering empty streets in all quarters of Venice, but we have never been to Pellestrina.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. RMW

    I was only in Venice for a couple of days… nowhere near long enough… I love the photos of the details on the wall… intriguing.


  7. Stone walls tell stories. One wonders what stories will be told by gyprock plaster or colourbond?
    Great photos Yvonne.


  8. We have not yet explored so far but it is good to know how much of Venice and the environs remains for us to investigate. That is an amazing piece of work and the fragments are fascinating. Someone must know their history.


  9. Your post intrigues and delights! I am fascinated by all of Venice. My husband has visited; I never have been so fortunate. Thank you for sharing.


  10. The Venice area is just full of delights. I went to the link about the Chinese grave stones. What a terrible thing to do!


  11. Do you think maybe the decorative sections were left over from building a palazzo and were put in originally to use up the excess?
    It’s a nice touch no matter what.
    Lovely picks…as usual.


  12. Brilliant and fantastic and I learn so much every time I read your blog and I don’t comment every time because I just feel like I’m repeating myself.
    If you get some time and can go to there are a couple of photos of recycling when building that are totally the opposite of the swa wall in Venice.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Coming from you, that is high praise, indeed. I thank you!

      I just went over to read your post about the Chinese. I can’t imagine walking from Robe to Ararat, even in this day and age, with the aid of GPs, good roads, and so on.

      I hope everyone else follows your link to read about some of the history of this wide brown land.

      Liked by 1 person

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