Venice was surrounded by salt water but didn't have drinking water, so some wells were built to collect rainwater. The wells vera
, is a typical Venetian word that means the visible stone, the one that covers the well itself.
At the beginning, to cover the wells, recycled materials were used, taken from the ruins of Altino; in fact the oldest wells have vere
made with some portions of capitals and columns sections. Many of these vere
show effigy of the family that has built the well.
The largest one is located in campo San Polo and measures 320 cm in diameter.
In XIX century the census counted about six thousand wells, but after 1884, after the aqueduct construction, many wells were destroyed especially the brick ones.
In Corte Fontana at St. Marina you can see the last artifact.
Today Venice has about 600 wells, of which none are in use.