Dolo, Italy

Dolo is located between Padova and Venice, one of the towns of the Riviera del Brenta and has many Venetian palaces.  There is a place to park one's vehicle on the western side of the town as I show in the video which is alongside the Brenta.

The growth of the town of Dolo is due to the gradual downsizing of the maritime power of Venice which was historically oriented towards Dalmatia, the Aegean Sea and the Middle East, occurred concurrently with the fall of the Byzantine Empire, the Islamic expansion and the new opening of navigation routes to the Americas.

The resulting was the need to address inland its new commercial interests.

At the beginning of the fifteenth century, documents testify to the existence of a village which, developing, gave rise to the economic importance of Dolo, always linked to the construction of its water mills collecting the wheat from the nearby agricultural lands and then grinding the flour and embarking same into cargo boats pulled by horses along the banks of the Brenta Canal to the lagoon, from where they continued directly up to the Venice island settlement.

Drinking water, too, was carried from Dolo to the center of Venice by cargo boats with big barrels filled directly from springs of the little river Seriola.

The territory was affected by massive hydraulic works that led to the diversion of the main bed of the river Brenta through an artificial canal with new mouths along the southern sea approaches of the port of Chioggia, while just one part of the old Brenta still flows into the lagoon near the location of Fusina.

The purpose of these megalithic hydraulic works was primarily to prevent the progressive flooding of the lagoon by the fresh water of the rivers and thus maintaining a high degree of salinity necessary to make viable the navigation and the same existence of Venice.

Until 1405 the jurisdiction of Dolo was under Padua, and then passed definitely under the dominion of Venice.

A boat called the Burchiello transported Venetians noblemen directly to the Riviera sailing along the river Brenta, which was considered as a natural extension of the Grand Canal, to spend summer in their sumptuous villas.

The water level of the navigable river ways were controlled by a system of locks which are nowadays still visible in the center of Dolo, even if the evolution basin is now ground filled.

An old marble table is still shown nearby to show toll tariffs for the transit in the locks for each type of boats coming from or going to Padua.

Close to basin, there is a small shipyard, now dismissed, which was anciently used to repair and shelter the boats prior or after transiting the locks, while laboratories of caulk were housed all around.

The origin of the name of Dolo is quite uncertain and controverted.  One hypothesis asserts the name comes from the contraction of "Dandolo", surname of a noble Venetian family who gave a doge to the city of Venice and had properties here.

From old maps it appears that the town’s name was sometimes reported as “ Dollo “ which in archaic Italian language could also mean a tower which was probably demolished thereafter, unless it refers to church’s belfry which is the highest in the region of Veneto, just second to St. Mark’s belfry in Venice.

A picture of the ancient locks of Dolo by the Venetian painter Canaletto is visible in the National Gallery in London.


Venetian Palaces

  • Villa Grimani-Migliorini: via Martiri della Libertà; first record 1635.
  • Villa Velluti già Baffo-Vezzi-Avogadro: via Ettore Tito; first record 1661.
  • Palazzetto Molin-Tito: via Ettore Tito; first record 1797.
  • Villa Nani Mocenigo: via Martiri della Libertà 113; first record 1700.
  • Villa Mocenigo-Basso: via Martiri della Libertà 3; first record 1642.
  • Villa Badoer Fattoretto: angolo via Badoera e via Tito; first record 1518.
  • Palazzo Badoer-Gottardo: via Badoera; first record 1740.
  • Villa Badoer-Basso: via Badoera; first record 1520.
  • Villa Morosini-Velluti: via Argine sinistro; first record 1621.
  • Villa Morosini: via Ca'Tron.
  • Villa Mioni: via Ca'Tron 81.
  • Villa Barbo-Baldan: via Brentabassa; first record 1637.
  • Villa Ferretti Angeli; via Brentabassa 41; first record 1582.
  • Villa Foscari-Zen-Bon-Lazzaroni: via Brentabassa; first record 1630.
  • Villa Collalto-Mocenigo-Carminati; via Matteotti; first record 1620.
  • Casa Dotto de Dauli-Gottardo: via Matteotti 84; first record 1605.
  • Villa Bortoletti-Bianchi-Seranto-Pittaro: via Matteotti 32; first record 1635.
  • Villa Venier-De Goetzen (oggi ristorante): via Matteotti 6; first record 1739.
  • Palazzina Bianche-Duodo-Valeggia: via Matteotti 51; first record 1797.
  • Palazzetto "delle Finanze": via Matteotti 63.
  • Canonica di Dolo: via Dauli 12/14.
  • Villa Lusi-Andreuzzi-Bon-Spezzati: via Rizzo; first record 1661.
  • Villa Dandolo-Michiel: via Mazzini; first record 1518.
  • Villa Barbarigo (attualmente in uso all'ospedale di Dolo) via Mazzini 2; first record 1661.
  • Palazzo Molin: via Garibaldi 19;first record 1566.
  • Palazzo Corner: Piazza Cantiere;  first record 1740.
  • Palazzetto Ottoboni: via Garibaldi 63; first record 1661.
  • Ca' Ottoboni: via Garibaldi; first record 1661.
  • Villa Contarini-Donà-Pisani-Prà: via San Giacomo; first record 1566.
  • Villa Concina; via Comunetto 5.
  • Villa Fini: via Martiri della Libertà 27; first record 1665; destroyed during a tornado on 8 July 2015.