Island of San Michele as seen from the lagoon.

Monumental Cemetery. Entering from the lagoon.

Fencing wall of the cemetery on the island of San Michele.

The tomb of Igor Stravinsky.

The Church of San Michele in Isola .
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immagine didascalia

Island of San Michele as seen from the lagoon.


immagine didascalia

Monumental Cemetery. Entering from the lagoon.


immagine didascalia

Fencing wall of the cemetery on the island of San Michele.


immagine didascalia

The tomb of Igor Stravinsky.


immagine didascalia

The Church of San Michele in Isola .



Island of San Michele and the Cemetery

In front of the Fondamente Nuove in Venice is a small island – San Michele – with the white church of San Michele in Isola and the city cemetery. Work started on the church 1469 by Mauro Codussi and was the first Renaissance building to be built in Venice.

In 1400 the famous map-maker, Frà Mauro, worked in the monastery on this island; the Americans have named a large crater on the moon in his honour.
A Napoleonic edict banned the Venetians to renounce the tradition of burying their dead in cemeteries near the city churches for obvious health reasons. In fact, owing to the level of the water, it was impossible to dig deep graves and many wells during periods of acqua alta became contaminated by water that had come into contact with the buried bodies. Many visitors to the city at the time described the stench that spread from such cemeteries. The first cemetery to be set up outside the city was on the island of "San Cristoforo", but when more space was needed another cemetery was created on the island of "San Michele".

The cemetery has a typically Italian structure with a graveyard in one section and a park with mausoleums (some particularly fine) in another section, continuing the Venetian tradition for monumental tombs. Many famous artists are buried in Venice, including Ezra Pound (1885-1972), Sergei Diaghilev (1872-1929) and Igor Stravinskij (1882-1971).


1300 - 1400  -   ISOLE - rev. 0.1.7

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Venice and its lagoons

World Heritage, a dialogue between cultures: which future?

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