IN COLLABORATION WITH:
PONTE DELLE BARCHE
The burci are traditional river boats. Near the ancient Piazza dell’Isola (Piazza Matteotti), towards today’s “Quartiere della Barche”, where the Bacchiglione and Retrone rivers lap the historic centre, stood the ancient port (still visible in the Pianta Angelica of Vicenza of 1580), a crucial point for the trade of goods with Venice and Padua. Nearby is “Contrà Burci”, whose name recalls the important activity.
There are numerous records of the fraglia dei Burci, the confraternity of ‘boat owners’, of which documentation is preserved in the Bertoliana Library. In Dante’s work, the “burchi” are used as a simile to indicate the arrival of the infernal monster Geryon on the shore of the seventh circle, suspended between earth and void, which will transport him to the eighth circle, that of the malebolge.
«As sometimes wherries lie upon the shore,
That part are in the water, part on land;»
Inf. 17^, vv.19-20