Tuesday, February 20, 2018 /
Main entrances

Main entrances

The Jews must all live together in the Douses that stand in the ghetto near San Girolamo. And so that they do not go about at night, let two gates be made, one on the side of the Old Ghetto where there is a small bridge, and one on the other side of the bridge - that is, one gate for each place. And let these gates be opened in the morning at the ringing of the Marangona [the main bell of St Mark's] and locked at midnight by four Christian gatekeepers, appointed and paid by the Jews themselves at a rate that our Council decides fair ...

The Jews were forced to live in the Ghetto from 1516 until 1797. The original Ghetto is known as the New Ghetto. It was extended by the irrationally-named Old Ghetto in 1541, and by the Newest Ghetto in 1633. In spite of these enlargements, the ghetto never extended much beyond the Campo Nuovo Ghetto and its surrounding buildings. The constant shortage of space meant that the buildings in the ghetto were taller than elsewhere in the city. The three gates to the Ghetto were locked at night and during certain Christian festivals. The canals which encircle the ghetto were patrolled by armed guards. The posts of the gate which once barred the narrow passage from the Ghetto to the Fondamenta di Cannaregio are still visible.

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