Why Visit Torcello? (PART 1)


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You may be romantic enough to believe the Venice has been around forever (and that the world would have been a more beautiful place if it had been), and will continue to be around forever, but you’d be utterly wrong. Some say that Venice itself is slowly sinking into the Adriatic Sea, but that is another story…. Many many years before there was a city even remotely resembling Venice, there was a tiny town miles away called Torcello — they were here first. A bustling center for the first four centuries of its existence, eventually people began to migrate to the area in Venice where the Rialto bridge is now located, and this is how Venice began. One could say that native Venetians actually began as Torcellans.


Still romantic and interesting albeit a little ragged around the edges, Torcello remains a spot that most tourists or vacationers will still do well to go and pay a visit to, if for no other reason than to be able to state that they visited the place that truly holds the root history of Venice It is a tiny island with a population to date of approximately 75 people in all. There is very little that still exists on the island to show that it was once a large town; most of the materials from the buildings were brought off the island over to Venice to assist in raising buildings and bridges there. The vast majority of the have utterly disappeared, but that is not to say there are not some interesting things to come and see here.


One of the biggest attractions on the island of Torcello would have to be The Devils Bridge. With so fascinating a nickname, of course there is a legend attached to it. The legend for this bridge is one of a young girl and her lover in the 18th century. She fell in love with a soldier her parents forbade her to be with; when the girl refused to comply, her parents had the soldier killed. The girl turned to a local witch for help in raising the dead boy-and the witch made a deal with the devil himself in return for the promise of seven souls to make up for the one the devil helped bring back. f course, when the lovers were reunited, they fled; leaving the witch to gather the required souls alone. Giving the devil the promise that she would return with seven souls (from the island populace)the witch made her departure-then died before she had to hold up her end of the bargain. They say the Devil himself remains on vigil near the bridge on moonless nights, still waiting to collect those missing souls.


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