There are some ancient legends that bear a strange resemblance to the situation of the Lagoon today, just few of these are ever mentioned in travel guides. The legend of the “Three Saints” that succeeded in saving Venice from terrible floods caused by a winter storm back in the year 1341. The storm is actually no legend but the real basis of the legend, painted by Jacopo Palma Il Vecchio, 1490 – 1528, in his Burrasca di Mare), a painting you can see the Galleria dell’Accademia.
The fisherman goes back to his bridge Ponte della Paglia, referring everything he had seen to the Doge (must have been doge Bartolomeo Gradenigo (1339-1342) and showed him a ring that the Doge had lost some time ago in the sea (l’annello del pescatore). Strangely enough, can’t we notice some similarities of this 700-year old legend to today’s situation our lagoon and town are in: La salvezza di Venezia, the fate and survival of Venice, will definitely depend on whether the water masses flooding into the lagoon at the bocche di porto can be finally “tamed”, meaning that acqua alta high tides push into the lagoon exactly here, … enhanced by deep-dug shipping lanes, deep enough to let oversized cruise vessels pass …
How come did Venetians know what would happen a thousand years afterwards, and what would really threaten their home, the Lagoon … here a cruise ship passing in front of the Church of San Giorgio Maggiore.
PS. The merchant fleet of the Republic of Venice parked OUTSIDE, it was NEVER allowed into the Lagoon. Vessels were moored along a natural sandbank protecting the Lido and the boats from the open sea. This Scanno della Pisotta, as the sandbank was called, disappeared 150 years ago.