Wells

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This page is an overview of all the wells on Venice.

There are approximately 231 wells in the City of Venice, capped by 231 wellheads. These wells no longer serve any functional purpose but still exist beneath the streets of Venice.

Wells
Well structure.png
A Venetian Well Structure [1]
Total Number of Mainland Wells Recorded
Cannaregio 50
Castello 58
Sante Croce 20
San Polo 23
San Marco 48
Dorsoduro 29
Giudecca 3
Total Number of Wells on Islands of the lagoon
Murano 6
Burano 2
Torcello 6
Lido 1
Malamocco 3
San Pietra in Volta 1
Portosecco 1
Pellestrina 4
Chioggia 2

Contents

History

As a series of islands surrounded by a salt-water lagoon, Venice lacks natural sources of freshwater. As a result, Venice has found alternative ways to obtain freshwater for the city. As far back as the 6th century, Venetians built well systems to collect and filter rain to be stored as freshwater.

Venetians depended on this system for their fresh water supply until 1884, when a modern water supply system was established [2]

Function

The general design of a well and cistern typically includes a clay basin that stores rainwater. This water collects through street-level drains, filters through fine river sand, and then accumulates in the basin. There is a brick or stonewall well shaft that allows access to the water from the street level. These wells served as sources of fresh water in Venice. The water is retrieved from a structure called a wellhead.

A design of a Venetian well system.[3]

Map

The location of the wells, along with its wellheads, are designated by red dots on the map.

See Also

Reference

  1. "Venice: The Basics". Gambier Keller, 2010
  2. A city on the water but without fresh water,” n.d.
  3. Rizzi, 1981

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