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Feast of Good Health
From: 2013.11.21 To: 2013.11.21
Follow the lead of pious Venetians who make an annual boat pilgrimage to ensure their good health. This isn't only for weak joints or runny noses, though, nor is it overcrowded with tourists. Nevertheless, the Festa della Salute or Festival of Good Health is a tradition in Venice that has been taken very seriously since 1630. The plague struck in October of that year and by November nearly a third of the city's population had died. Uncertain about how to handle the mysterious and deadly sickness, locals sought out divine intervention. To assist, the city's chief magistrate decided the best way to save the population would be to offer a monument to the Virgin Mary if the sickness ceased. Their prayers were answered. By early winter the virus had run its course. And that's when construction of the elegant and enormous Chiesa della Salute began. Out of thankfulness for good health, locals have prayed against the impressive marble pillars of the Chiesa della Salute for generations since.