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Corruption, wealth and beauty: The history of the Venetian gondola - Laura Morelli

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It’s hard to imagine Venice without the curious, banana-shaped gondolas that glide down the canals. How did these boats come to be the trademark transportation of Venice? Laura Morelli details the history of the gondola, explaining why these boats were needed, the painstaking process by which they were made and why they have slowly begun to fade from the once-crowded canals.

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Meet The Creators

  • Educator Laura Morelli
  • Director Andrew Foerster
  • Script Editor Michael Molina
  • Narrator Addison Anderson

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Additional Resources for you to Explore
Carrying the Torch of Tradition
Each year in Venice, fewer authentic gondolas are turned out by hand. Today, only a dozen or so new gondolas are produced in Venice annually, handmade by a group of specialized artisans who hold the history of the craft—literally—in their hands. The Squero San Trovaso is the city’s longest continually operating squero, documented as far back as the late 1600s. Today it is owned by the city of Venice and operated by a co-op of specialized artisans who make new gondolas and refurbish old ones. The Squero Tramontin is a family boatyard begun in 1884, and focuses on the old-fashioned handmade skills of gondola making.Take a look and see what it takes to make a Venetian gondola.

Take a ride through Venice on an actual gondola! Find out the history of the gondola and watch as gondoliers traverse through the canals of Venice! How do you steer a gondola from one side? Watch this video clip and learn!

More About Venetian Gondolas
To learn more about gondolas and other authentic traditions of Venice, read Laura Morelli’s books including Made in Italy, as well as her work of historical fiction set in a 16th-century Venetian boatyard, The Gondola Maker. Visit the blog at www.lauramorelli.com for additional information on Venetian gondolas and other centuries-old artistic traditions.

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About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animation lessons feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Laura Morelli
  • Director Andrew Foerster
  • Script Editor Michael Molina
  • Narrator Addison Anderson

Share

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