Jesolo at the Serenissima time
by Manuel Pavanello
Venice never had true city walls; its shelter has always been the lagoon, not fordable on foot by any army in an ordinary condition. However, in the XVI century the level of the water lowered so much and compelled the Council of Pregadi (or the Senate) to think of a land plan to prevent this chance. There were two opposite political-ideological stances, even if both agreed on the will of divert the mouth of Brenta river out of the lagoon to avoid its pitting.
Alvise Corner suggested to use the mud obtained from the digging out of the new bed of the river to split the lagoon from the see – the same concept about Mose – and to convert it in a huge bank protected by real bastions. The aim was to address the development of Serenissima towards the mainland, changing totally its look and vocation from a trade – maritime one to an agrarian one.
Instead Cristoforo Sabbadino suggested to remove the rubbles seated in the lagoon and the channels bottom. The mud extracted in that way would be useful to the extension of Venice on the lagoon, staying in a close contact with the sea. The last one was the winner, as it was respectful of the tradition.
This affair made the Venetian better define which were its boundaries – town walls, in order to preserve them. A long debate followed till the two-year period 1791-92, when 100 “old type” boundary stones were built. Among these 100 original ones only 5 are left, 2 of them in Jesolo.